In a tranquil spot near ancient Wentwood Forest, this lovely four-bedroom country cottage has been sympathetically converted and extended from a modest, nineteenth century farmhouse and its adjoining stable.
Oaklands provides well-presented, family-sized accommodation and oozes character and charm, with exposed beams and rustic whitewashed walls. It stands in gardens and grounds of approximately a third of an acre near the Monmouthshire village of Llanvaches. From its elevated setting it enjoys superb, far-reaching views to Wentwood reservoir and Wentwood Forest. The Severn Estuary can be seen through the trees and it looks up to Gray Hill, known for its Bronze Age stone circle. It is right on the edge of Wentwood Forest, which is the largest ancient woodland in Wales and the ninth largest in the UK.
For the vendors, it has been a very special home: "There are not many places where you get a view like this. It is absolutely stunning. It has been a fantastic family home and it's a great environment to be brought up in. It's excellent mountain biking territory and we would go running as well. If you live around here, it is almost mandatory to have a dog as there are so many lovely dog walks. This area is also very popular with horse riders."
Ideal for those who enjoy nature, wildlife and the great outdoors, the cottage is also well situated for commuting - the vendor works in Gloucester. The cottage benefits from convenient access to the A48 and onward to the M4, bringing Bristol and Cardiff within easy reach and there is also good access to the A449 and M50 for travel to the Midlands.
About two miles away, Llanvaches is a popular village with an active community life and a traditional country pub. The vendors' children attended school in nearby Caerleon. "The bus for the comprehensive school stopped outside the front door." For supermarkets, shops and further facilities, there's a choice of Newport or Chepstow, which are roughly equidistant (9-10 miles) or Caldicot, some 7 miles away.
Step inside:- - The cottage is set alongside a quiet country lane, from which it is well screened. A track leads round the cottage to a double garage with space in front for three cars. There is additional space for one car on a cobbled area in front of the cottage.
The former farmhouse, built some time before 1835, now incorporates a converted attached stable to one end and a modern extension to the other. There are oak framed windows to the front and side of the property and all the windows are double glazed.
From the front porch, an oak stable door opens to a formal dining room, in the oldest part of the house. This room has exposed ceiling beams, a riven slate floor and antique-style brass wall and ceiling lights. A wood burning stove set on a raised stone hearth makes a cosy seating area at one end. At the other end of the room another fireplace has been blocked up but left as a feature. Two windows look out over the front gardens.
From the back of the room, a door leads to a rear hallway, where there's an oak entrance door. This leads from the back garden and is the access which the vendors use most. From the hallway, four flagstone steps with a rope banister lead down to a wonderful, light and airy sitting room, converted from the former stable. There is an exposed stone feature wall and three windows each frame different views. A floor-to-ceiling window has external oak shutters but the house is so private that the vendors do not feel the need for curtains and in the evenings, enjoy the night sky. "There is very little light pollution here so you get fantastic views of the stars."
In an extension at the other end of the cottage there is a spacious farmhouse-style kitchen with a ceramic tiled floor, exposed ceiling beams, a range of Shaker-style units and space in the middle for a family dining table. The kitchen windows gives views over the garden and the bank to the side of the house. "In the mornings, we enjoy watching the wildlife there."
The downstairs accommodation is completed by a recently refurbished shower room.
Open tread stairs from the hallway lead to up to four bedrooms. The stunning principal bedroom has a soaring ceiling open to the exposed a-frame. Three windows let in plenty of light. "The one at the foot of the bed has the best view of all, looking up to Gray Hill, Wentwood Forest and Wentwood Reservoir and out over fields where there are often sheep."
The principal bedroom benefits from a large in-built storage cupboard and an en-suite bathroom with a fitted vanity unit. There is a drencher shower over the bath, as well as a hand shower.
At the other end of the house there is another delightful double bedroom, also exposed to the a-frame. In between, in the oldest part of the house, are two charming double bedrooms, each with an original fireplace. In the larger of the two there is a useful cupboard and an access hatch to boarded roof storage space. The first floor accommodation also includes a family bathroom, with a bath with shower taps.
Outside - The cottage stands in mature gardens of about a third of an acre, with an adjacent area of about 2.74 acres of woodland and grassland, where there are two small stone outbuildings, one derelict, one converted to a bat shelter.
The lawns around the property are bordered by established trees and shrubs with a wall along one side, all providing a high degree of privacy. There is also fruit orchard. The level front lawn provides a wonderful place to sit and enjoy the long-distance views. "In winter, when the trees have lost their leaves you can see to the Severn Estuary and the two Severn bridges". At the back of the house, there is a cosy outside seating area where the vendors like to have breakfast or coffee. The back garden is dog-proof.
A curved pathway leads from the back door to the detached double garage, which is of brick and block construction and has electric up and over doors. At the back of the garage is a workshop with a window, which has potential to be converted to a home office.
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