A truly magnificent and historic country residence set on the edge of Brook near Minstead in the heart of the New Forest.
Bignell Wood carries great provenance as the retreat of the late author, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, from 1924 to 1930. Renowned for his series Sherlock Homes, it was while researching for his book The White Company that he discovered the New Forest and which led to him buying Bignell Wood as a birthday present for his second wife Jean for them to use as their rural retreat. The village of Minstead featured strongly in The White Company and is where Conan Doyle was finally interred at All Saints Church in Minstead.
Brook in Bramshaw is one of the most attractive New Forest villages and provides an excellent range of facilities to include village hall, church, village shop, two country public houses, hotel, restaurants, garage and the renowned Bramshaw Golf Club with two 18 hole courses.
The New Forest offers thousands of acres of unspoilt moors, heath and woodland for those with walking and equestrian pursuits. For those with interests in yachting Hamble, Lymington and Poole are all within easy driving distance.
The cathedral city of Salisbury is situated about 16 miles to the north. The M27 at Cadnam is about 1 mile distant. Mainline rail links at Southampton Central to London Waterloo are about 15 minutes drive as is Southampton Airport. Bournemouth Airport is 25 minutes away.
An entrance porch with limestone tiled flooring leads into an inner lobby with cloakroom set off.
Steps lead up into a welcoming reception hall with large feature open fireplace with stone mantle and hearth and inset wood burner, the main staircase leads up from here to the first floor. A door opens out to the rear garden, one into the sitting room and another through into the principle drawing room which has another cosy fireplace with inset woodburner and benefits from superb outlooks with triple aspects across the front and side gardens and Forest beyond. It is thought to have been from this room that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle would have written, sat at his desk within one of the corner bay windows.
The sitting room presents another lovely seating area around a central elegant stone fireplace with wood burner and views across the rear gardens and Forest. This leads through to an inner hallway with access to a ground floor bedroom and supporting bathroom and then leading through to the kitchen and dining room.
The kitchen is set in the centre of the property making it a truly central hub to congregate for entertaining around the large island. The kitchen is fitted with a range of tasteful handmade wooden cabinetry, built in Aga, Belfast sink and coordinating granite worktops. The kitchen opens into a beautiful dining room which can accommodate a large dining table and chairs and again overlooks the rear garden. A good size utility and pantry are set off the kitchen from where a further door leads out to the front gardens and the covered terrace.
The hallway continues to the far end of the property where you can find a useful boot room with access to the rear garden, a stylish media room with bespoke built in cabinetry and French doors leading out to the covered terrace.
Two study’s are located at the far end of the hall along with the second back staircase and access out to the side garden, barn and woodland garden.
The first floor provides an array of beautifully designed bedrooms including two stylish suites, one with elegant panelled bathroom with slipper bath and hidden shower cubical with views across the forest to the rear. The other with dressing area and modern ensuite with walk in large shower and stainless steel slipper bath and vanity basin.
There are 4 further bedrooms to this level and another 2 bathrooms. At one end of the landing there are two further rooms, currently used as a hobby room and music room but which could equally be made into another suite or self contained area suitable for dependent relatives or a housekeeper.
From the landing there is access, via a pull down metal ladder, to a large unconverted attic room which gives opportunity for providing additional accommodation if required (stp).
The second back staircase leads you back down to the ground floor.
A very beautifully designed detached cottage set in the grounds with its own private wooden walkway across the stream with winding path leading up the entrance.
The entrance opens into a snug with built in corner bench seating. A shower room is set off an inner hall with stairs leading up into a cosy living area with central wood burner. The kitchen area provides bespoke units with coordinating work surfaces, a belfast sink is set in front of the window overlooking the stream and front gardens.
From the sitting room steps take you up to a stunning split level bedroom with vaulted ceiling with cladding, panelling to the walls and built in window seating. Doors lead you out onto a small balcony overlooking the forest and woodland.
The cottage has been recently renovated to a high specification with lots of attention to detail and offers versatile self contained annexe accommodation or the option to utilise as a holiday cottage to generate additional income.
Link to the cottage on airbnb:
Bignell Wood is set in a superb position with a blend of landscaped gardens, woodland and paddocks surrounding the house and cottage, in total around 6 acres.
The drive is accessed via a five bar gate which leads down to a turning circle and parking area. To the left as you drive down, there is a separate detached garage and workshop with potential office room above. A further lawn leads to the stream which forms the far boundary here.
The prominent stream is a real feature of the grounds, dividing the plot and winding down through the gardens with two wooden walk ways to access the main house and the cottage.
A path leads up to the entrance of the main house and round to the front where a large covered terrace provides a lovely place to dine and entertain from and overlooks the front lawns and stream. The terrace continues onto the side gardens and leads to a selection of useful outbuildings including a very unique barn. Beyond the barn a woodland area pivots down to the end of the grounds and wraps round to the rear garden.
The rear garden is mainly laid to lawn with interspersed flower beds and a gate leads you to the open forest.
An original well is set to the rear of the house.
Set off the drive to the front of the property, a five bar gate leads to the equine area which houses three stables, a tack room/timber store and hay store which leads through to two separate paddocks and a chicken run and coup.