If living in a gorgeous, historic house is your ultimate property dream, how about if it is then located in a landscape that is actually listed, surrounded by neighbouring listed buildings, too?
That’s three stand-out reasons to get over-excited, but if you add into the property mix a location that is overwhelming in its beauty and an island of idyllic peace that is truly unique, you might just melt.
It’s unlikely many three-bed semi-detached houses for sale in Wales, although all have their positive aspects to offer a potential buyer, can come anywhere near competing with this charming Arts & Crafts home.
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The first intriguing aspect of this dream home is the fact that it’s Grade II listed, not the only three-bed semi in Wales to be listed of course, but this one is joined by its listed neighbour and the land that it stands on.
The distinctive pair of semis are constructed from brown stone with bath stone dressings, slate roof and mullioned windows and said to be designed and built between 1906 and 1909.
This duo of delights are part of a garden village called Elan Village within the truly unique Elan Valley nestled within the beauty of the Powys countryside near Rhayader, overlooking stunning Elan Valley Trust lands and an RSPB Reserve.
Many people head for the coastline of our nation for days out or a holiday, or crowd into the car parks at one of the National Parks, but maybe not everyone has even heard of this amazing location, let alone visited it.
Imagine being lucky enough to live within it, but you’ll have to be patient, because according to property portal Zoopla there have only been two property sales in the area within the last five years.
The home’s Grade II listing was achieved in July 1995 according to website British Listed Buildings for being ‘high quality early 20th Century Arts & Crafts pair of houses, forming part of a group of Garden Village buildings in Elan Village’.
The houses are part of the village that was built by the Birmingham Corporation Water Company as part of the Elan Valley reservoir scheme to dam the rivers Claerwen and Elan to provide clean water for the city of Birmingham.
The company, controversially, compulsory purchased the water catchment areas of the Elan valleys in order to create reservoirs.
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Work began on the building of the Elan Valley dams in 1893 to create this series of reservoirs and completed in 1904, when it was opened by King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra.
But the area’s history goes back much further than the last 120 years, with website Elan Valley stating that there have been people living in the valley and surrounding hills for over 4,000 years.
The area has been well-known for centuries for many reasons, with Edward I clearing sections of the forest due to the trees providing shelter for thieves in the area. And during World War II the area was used as a practice site for the now famous dambusters raid on German dams. The reservoirs are now owned and operated by Dwr Cymru Welsh Water.
The village constructed at the base of one of the dams is part of the Elan Valley Estate and it is surely one of the most unique villages and places to live in Wales.
The sprawling collection of buildings includes a range of fascinating buildings and includes the former school called Elan Valley Lodge, now used as a five-star activity, eatery and accommodation centre containing 24 ensuite rooms.
There’s one main street of characterful stone homes that quietly wander along the valley floor, flanked by colourful hillsides – not your usual road of residential semis and detached houses.
The landscape of hills, valleys, woodland waterways and reservoirs, as well as the history, led to the Elan Valley being designated as a Registered Historic Landscape by Cadw in 2001.
So this home, that has just come onto the market, is a rare chance indeed and, as well as a stunning landscape surrounding the home and providing breath-taking views from every angle, the house offers stunning views inside too.
As you would expect from a classic Arts & Crafts home, the spaces include quality craftsmanship in natural materials such as wood and stone masonry.
In addition there are many examples of quality and nature based additions such as quarry floor tiles in the kitchen, wooden fireplace mantel, picture rails and panelled wooden internal doors.
If you take more time to look for more details, you will find additional design extras to delight, such as the ironmongery on some of the doors.
The ground floor has a large living room with an extra study area leading off this welcoming and comfortable space which could also be used as a dining area or snug.
There’s a kitchen diner that includes a breakfast table area for sociable dining and there’s also a downstairs cloakroom and charming arched door out to the generous rear and side garden.
Upstairs the house offers three bedrooms, one with an ensuite, as well as a handy separate shower room.
All spaces have a warm, classic and comfortable interior design, based in neutral tones and natural materials to complement the style of the home but with a modern flavour.
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All rooms have their own special, stone-framed view of the glorious valley that surrounds the house that is a constant pull to wander out into the garden and fully immerse yourself in them.
The garden at this special house is, of course, a special space that wraps around the house and contains formally designed areas as well as informal alfresco dining spaces and ample parking.
But the garden is keeping a secret, at least from the front aspect. Hidden from sight by the main house, there is a one-bedroom holiday cottage at the end of the garden.
Constructed from stone and wood and with windows that pay homage to a mullion and historic design, it blends well with the main house from the outside, and inside offers an upside down layout.
On the ground floor there’s a kitchen and shower room and even a garage, which could be converted into a second bedroom if required and subject to planning consent.
Upstairs in the cottage the reason for the layout becomes instantly clear, with a Juliet balcony at one end allowing a hillside view to dominate from this elevated position, as well as a wonderful way to allow any fresh breezes to waft in.
Character is in evidence too via the sloping ceilings, exposed beams and pretty, colourful and modern interiors, ensuring any paying guest or visiting family members or friends will have a comfortable and cosy stay, amply assisted by the feature log burner.
And why wouldn’t anyone want to come and stay at this pretty lodge within this stunning landscape; there’s so much to enjoy on the doorstep.
Obviously, with so much water around, there are opportunities to try so many different water sports, as well as fishing, rambling and horse riding.
Website Visit Wales says the Elan Valley Estate sprawls over 72 square miles, making up 1% of the whole of Wales and is also designated as an International Dark Sky Park, so it’s special at night as well as in the daytime.
Website Visit Wales describes the Elan Valley Estate as truly epic, and to live in amongst its beauty must be truly epic too.
This rare chance to do so will cost you around £620,000, the guide price placed on this gorgeous home in the village called Ty Olaf by estate agents McCartney’s LLP, call their Builth Wells branch on 01982 552259 to find out more.
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