THE BSPC PROPERTY GUIDE / FEATURE PROPERTY
If horses could choose where to live, this refurbished country house near Oxnam would be a clear winner The name is the same, however you won’t find this White House at 1450 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington DC. It has entirely different countryside vistas as befits the three-acre setting in a small hamlet just two miles from Oxnam, a pretty village south of Jedburgh within easy reach of the A68, which puts Edinburgh, Newcastle and Carlisle, as well as Kelso and other Border towns, within commuting distance. This White House has been extensively upgraded and reworked by present owners Steven and Claire Turnbull to create a horse paradise, with grazing land and animal-safe timber fencing, a timber shelter, large floodlit schooling arena, and a recently built stable block incorporating five, 12’ x 12’ horse boxes with rubber flooring, tack room and a good-sized yard. Built in the 1970s and extended a decade or so later, the house had been lying empty for a while when Steven and Claire saw it four years ago. “It was in livable condition but needed a lot of work,” says Steven. “Luckily my dad is a joiner and Claire’s dad is an electrician, so we were sorted for the re-plumbing and re-wiring. We have also installed a new kitchen and bathroom, while a new rear porch with cloakroom, boot room and storage, that will save walking though the house coming from outdoors, is almost complete.” Planning to be here for life (had the opportunity to acquire a farm with more land for sheep not presented itself), every project undertaken on the property has been done to the very highest possible standards – literally built to last a lifetime, including the stable block recently purchased from Scotts of Thrapston, which is one of the best available.
While the accommodation for horses is first class, their owners also fare pretty well. The White House has an entrance vestibule, hall, large living room with an open fire (cast iron fireplace with timber surround), family/TV room, dining room, dining kitchen, and inner hall, off which are three bedrooms (one en suite), bathroom, office/nursery, utility and rear porch.
All the bedrooms lead off an inner hall that also provides good storage and hatch access to the attic. The south -facing master bedroom has an attractive en suite shower room, while the family bathroom incorporates a white enamel roll-top bath. A spacious utility houses laundry appliances, integrated freezer and storage.
Features are many but perhaps one of the most notable is this property’s exceptionally low running costs. In July 2011 Steven and Claire installed nine photovoltaic (PV) panels on the roof.
Custom-built stone dyke perimeter walls add a traditional rural feature to the south-facing garden, which is mainly lawn and, being enclosed, makes it a child and pet friendly space and a suntrap seating area in the summer months. The property also has a new Tarmac driveway that continues round to the rear and incorporates a large turning and parking area, a detached timber garage with hay store at the rear, separate kennel and storage shed.
Designed to generate electricity, these now make up one-third of the electricity costs. In addition, the multi-fuel stove that takes centre stage in the family room, can be used to feed all 11 radiators in the house, a lower cost alternative to the property’s dual-fuel oil-fired central heating system. The dining kitchen is a major attraction, fitted with an extensive range of timber wall and base units with concealed lighting and decorative tiled splashbacks. In addition to having a professional Rangemaster stove with overhead extractor, there is an integrated dishwasher, large pullout larder, and integrated fridge.
White House Swinside, Townhead, Oxnam Fixed Price £325,000 Details on page 12
This area of the Borders is especially horse friendly, with spectacular countryside and woodland offering superb riding opportunities. The same is also true of the house, which now offers bespoke equestrian facilities designed and built to the highest possible specification.
PROPERTY FOR SALE - White House, Swinside, Townhead, Oxnam - Fixed Price £325,000. An extensively upgraded and eco friendly country house i...