Internal viewings available on request .
With one of the largest private gardens in brighton.
Entirely unique, this substantial Victorian family home offers a wealth of period character and charm while also sitting within the most exceptional grounds seen anywhere in the city. Its enchanting, secret garden spans almost an acre with avenues of trees, a kitchen garden and immaculate lawns below a variety of mature trees and well-established plants. You would be forgiven for thinking these grounds belong to a stately home, yet they sit tucked away within the ever-popular 'Golden Triangle' area just west of Fiveways.
Built in 1898, the house bears many original features of the period and is spread over six half-landing floors, containing 5 double bedrooms and two elegant reception rooms providing ample space for any growing family. Slightly elevated on the hill and with a wealth of sash window glazing on both sides, the house is filled with natural light throughout the day, and from the upper floors, the views to the rear take you across the gardens and rooftops of the city towards the coast in the south. Every room feels generous with high ceilings - a huge amount of versatility depending on need. Planning has been sought and granted to reconfigure some of the rooms to create a large kitchen leading out to the garden, making this a highly attractive and exciting prospect for many.
While this house sits in a tranquil setting, it is incredibly well-connected by road, train and bus to the centre of Brighton and Hove, with the beach and city centre shops accessible in minutes. For commuters, Brighton Station is an easy walk plus the A23/A27 are just a few minutes by car, and you are within catchment for some of the city's best primary and secondary schools too. For families with younger children, the beautiful Blakers park is on your doorstep, and there is every amenity you could wish for at Fiveways, making this a highly attractive and exciting prospect for many.
Style: Semi-detached Victorian family home
Bedrooms: 5 double
Bathrooms: 2 plus 2 further WC
Living rooms: 2 spacious
Office/Study: 1 spacious
Area: 2690 sq.ft.
Outside: South east facing walled rear garden plus over 15,000 Sq Ft of manicured grounds.
Location: Preston Park Conservation Area
Parking: Permit parking zone J (no waiting list)
Why you'll like it:
Believed to have been the first houses built on Stanford Avenue, this pair of semi-detached Victorian villas and their detached neighbours have an air of grandeur on this tree-lined road due to their stature and decoration – but the magical secret gardens to the rear are owned by this house alone.
Set well back from the road behind walled front gardens with neatly manicured topiary and scented roses, a traditionally tiled path leads to the front door. Wide box-bay windows have stained glass panels and the double fronted, red brick façade is adorned with the architectural features of the late Victorian period; including a decorative bargeboard on the gable.
Upon entry, a useful vestibule has space for hanging coats and organising shoes and is a welcoming space with beautiful stained-glass panels around the front and internal doors.
From the anaglypta wallpaper below the dado rails, to the decorative cornicing and deep skirting boards, almost all the period features have been retained and restored throughout the house, and its layout has remained virtually untouched.
With soaring ceilings and classic plasterwork features, these elegant rooms mirror one another in size and shape. Wide wooden floorboards have been sanded and varnished back to their former glory, and each room has a grand open fireplace with marble detailing and Victorian tiles flanking their cast iron inserts. Ample glazing within the box bay windows frames pretty views of the front gardens, yet the planting ensures complete privacy from the street. Perfectly versatile, these rooms can be interchangeable for formal dining, relaxing or entertaining, and with two main receptions, it is ideal for families with older children who like to entertain independently on occasion.
Kitchen and sun-room:
On the first half-landing, original floor tiles flow into a central box-bay window to the rear of the house from which you gain the first of the exquisite garden views from a built-in window seat. From here, the kitchen is to the left and has been sensitively refurbished in keeping with the style of the property. Only fine quality, natural materials have been used in here, as solid wood units have been topped partly in granite with a ceramic sink cut-in, and part in oak with storage at both base and wall levels. Plans have been approved and plumbing has been put in place to move the kitchen to the lower floor; creating a much larger kitchen, dining and family room leading out to the garden which would potentially add value without losing any bedrooms – certainly food for thought.
Master bedroom and bedroom 2:
A single, graceful bannister wends its way up through the scissoring floors where the master bedroom and bedroom two face the front of the house, enjoying the same proportions as the reception rooms below them. Throughout the house, the beautiful period features continue with stained glass detailing in the sash windows, which look out towards Blakers Park and the attractive homes opposite. Another grand marble fireplace decorates bedroom two, and throughout the house, traditional style radiators were reinstated, offering both form and function to each space.
The master bedroom ensuite has been tiled in Carrera marble on the floor and rising up the wall behind the double width, rainfall shower, underfloor heating and a mirrored wall adds to the sense of space and light.
Top floor bedroom and bathroom:
The views only improve the further up the house you go. From the top floor you can now see right over the treetops and gardens of the local landscape towards the coast to where the i360 rises up from the beach front. With such an array of trees and plants, these views are ever changing with the seasons and with a southerly aspect, the rooms to the rear of the house are naturally light at all times of year.
Originally used for staff or children, these top floor rooms are peacefully tucked away, like a second master bedroom suite consisting of one generous double bedroom with an original wardrobe and fireplace, and a luxurious bathroom with travertine floor tiles, a deep bath with wall mounted taps and a walk-in rainfall shower bespoke made from Italian Marble – all with traditional style fixtures and fittings.
Lower floor bedrooms, studio office and cellar:
There are two further double bedrooms; one opposite the kitchen – also ideal for use as a comfortable second home office/study with a stunning view over the gardens, and one on the lower floor which leads out to the garden.
The office at the back of the house feels spacious and light overlooking the back garden.
All three rooms are generous in size and have a wealth of period features, but it is this ground floor level which could be converted to create an incredible kitchen and dining space with direct garden access.
A few steps lead down further to the cellar rooms which house a large utility area and W.C. With plenty of space that feeds the imagination. Again, these rooms are brimming with potential for conversion – ideal as a cinema room, teenage den/games room perhaps?
Wide stone steps lead down into the garden between two, neatly manicured bay trees to a circular lawn with well-established borders. Already impressive, this walled garden is a lovely space for children to play or for summer gatherings and the mature plants ensure it is perfectly private.
What makes this house completely unique, however, are the enchanting, romantic Victorian walled gardens which sit to the south of the rear garden – hidden away along a pretty brick path. Beautifully zoned to provide areas of sunshine and shade throughout the day, each space has also been expertly designed with architectural planting to create a variety of colours, textures and shapes.
Spread over one third of an acre, there is an avenue of pleached lime trees leading through to a raised York stone patio area which catches the last daily rays of the summer sunshine below an oak framed pergola festooned with trailing plants. It is a real treat for the senses out here with the tinkling sound of water and birdsong filling the air along with scents from the incredible kitchen garden. Abundant with fruits, vegetables and herbs of every variety, to include an asparagus bed, apples, pears, plums, raspberries, gooseberries, loganberries and more, there is also a self-ventilating, brick based green house for propagation.
Moving through to the far end of the garden is an area for wild flowers to attract wildlife and a large shed for working or storing garden furniture and tools, and an area of lawn which is not compromised even with a large trampoline. Dividing the garden are two parallel clipped yew hedgerows standing over 2-metres tall creating a maze-like walkway to a second area of lawn. Here a graceful acacia tree provides some welcoming shade, where rambling roses, wild geraniums, neat box hedges and climbing florals add colour and shape to the space.
It really is breath-takingly beautiful out here, and while the current owners do employ the services of a gardener once a month, it is relatively low maintenance.
This is an outstanding property which is completely unique. The house is abundant with original character and has been well-maintained, yet there is a huge amount of scope to add further value. It is the garden, however, which is undoubtedly the finest feature of any property we have seen in many years – so it really does need to be seen to be admired.
"We moved here ten years ago when the children were young and it has been the perfect family home for all of us. We wanted a larger garden, and we certainly got that living here! It has been a joy to look after and we can be almost self-sufficient with our fruit and vegetables during the summer as there is such a great variety out there. For entertaining the garden has also been fantastic and the house is really comfortable for larger families as you never feel on top of one another with plenty of bedrooms and reception rooms. The location is incredible with a real sense of community amongst the friendly neighbours and the children can walk to school with their friends and the parks are really nearby. Fiveways is very convenient for shops and amenities and there are some brilliant gastro pubs within easy walking distance. We have made many happy memories here so it will be a wrench to leave, but we no longer need the space."
Where it is:
Shops: Fiveways 3 min walk, Brighton City Centre 15 min bus ride
Train Station: Brighton Station 15-minute walk, London Road 8 min walk
Seafront or Park: Blakers Park opposite, Seafront 15 minute bus ride
Primary: Downs Junior and Infants Schools
Secondary: Varndean and Dorothy Stringer, Cardinal Newman rc
Sixth Form: Varndean College, bhasvic, Newman College
Private: Brighton and Hove High, Brighton College, Monessori
This stunning home is beautifully situated in a prestigious area with lots of local shops and green spaces on your doorstep. The city centre shopping districts and beach are also within easy reach, and this home also offers easy access to both Brighton and London Road Stations and the A23/A27 which have direct and fast access to the universities, the airports and London.