18 Jul Yorkshire’s 17th century cottage that grew
Rawdon Crag Wood Conservation area is easily one of the most highly regarded areas in North Leeds to live. A private, secluded greenscape offering sheltered, exclusive living right on the doorstep of Leeds City Centre. Home to the highly sought after Woodlands Drive with barriered entrance to keep out unwanted traffic, Crag Wood covers a rural suburb made up of mostly Victorian villas set in spacious wooded grounds developed in the 19th century. That is, apart from a handful of other distinctive and characterful properties such as Dove Cottage on Apperley Lane. The area screams rural but is indeed only a short distance from the city, the international airport at Leeds Bradford and only a quick walk to Apperley Bridge train station. No wonder this conservation area has become increasingly popular and so highly regarded in recent times.
Where pretty villas or castellated towers stud the hillside or nestle into the wood harking back to the Victorian age, much of the surviving woodland of the area and vernacular buildings of farmsteads and cottage terraces still remain and recall an earlier landscape.
One of those cottage terraces is home to Dove Cottage dating back to the 17th century. Now a Grade II listed building with only one neighbour, it’s sits atop Crag Wood and overlooks the golf course, surrounded by woodland. When Dove Cottage was purchased by its current owners, it was purchased as a mid-terrace cottage but there came an opportunity when the tenant of the end terrace moved. Buckstone Cottage, previously owned by Rawdon Golf Club and rented out, was sold to the owners of Dove Cottage, who had found an opportune time to make the golf club an offer so they might knock two cottages into one to make their dream home.
Upon integrating the two cottages into one larger property, many architectural discoveries were made. The owners discovered that the properties had once been linked together at an earlier time by an internal door that had been covered up; trusses were found underneath suspended ceilings; two fireplaces otherwise boarded up and mullion windows. The current owner who is a sculptor by trade has even added her own homage to this cottage’s past by adding her own handmade plaster friezes, looking so authentic that an inspector from the English Heritage thought they were approximately 300 years old!
Whilst also completing works, neolithic quern stones were unearthed, that would have been used for grinding seeds and grains. A mysterious doodle was also found on a boulder, most probably inscribed by a medieval master mason.
Not only did the wee cottage grow from one cottage to the footprint of two but it now also boasts a separate studio and garages plus it’s own woodland. The large studio/office space has more recently been added along with a log store and utility that was once a dove cote offering great potential to a future buyer to utilise as work space or a separate annex/self contained flat. Solar panels have also been added, offering an income and free electricity during day light hours, bringing in the highest tariffs and is tax fee.
The ground floor of the cottage now comprises of a kitchen, dining room/snug, a large bedroom and shower room.
The stair case with oak newel posts lead to the first floor’s 29ft living area, two more bedrooms and two bathrooms.
The cottage offers a flexible layout and has been refurbished sympathetically, in keeping with it’s period charm and characterfulness. Decorated throughout in white helps light to bounce and dance across each room, accentuating the original features that were unearthed when two cottages became one.
This cottage really has taken on a life of its own and the next owner we’re sure will make their own historical discoveries or even add their own mark to it’s legacy. On the market for offers in the region of £795,000, this rare opportunity does not come around very often in Leeds’ attractive Crag Wood. For more information on this one of a kind property, click here or us on 0113 2390012.