An art educator for nearly 40 years, Marie Stansby decided to take a leap of faith and embark on a new and exciting venture – converting a tired barn into a luxury holiday home for two. And the result is quite something.
Nestled in the Coquet Valley, between Rothbury and Felton, and packed with modern, Pinterest-worthy features, the one-bed home is an interior-lover’s dream.
Take a tour and discover crisp white walls, glorious high-beamed ceilings, tons of natural light and modern furniture, fixtures and appliances, including large smart TVs with Netflix.
You’ll also find a fully-equipped kitchen, one large family bathroom, a utility room, bike storage and an impressive studio and workshop-style space, inspired by Marie’s love of art, where guests can kick-back and create.
Explore a little more and you’ll see Marie’s own work, along with prints and paintings by local artists in Northumberland, on the walls of both the studio and the remainder of the property.
The journey from barn to wow-house began on paper in the summer of 2017 and the vision started to become real when the builders arrived on site in October 2018. There were several ‘hiccups’ along the way; roof collapsing at one end, rotten beams and the push to make the building water tight before the worst of the winter weather, but eventually the vision has become a reality. “Grey Hens offers far more than just a place to stay,” says Marie.
“It encompasses all the things I love; a welcoming home, artwork and an acre of garden, which has been 20 years in the making.”
“I love the way the property brings the garden and surrounding countryside into the cottage. The glass wall allows every element of nature to envelop you.”
The garden is at the heart of the home and divided into rooms, dictated by coloured herbaceous planting. Each of them have a unique feature, too, such as a fire pit, or a pond.
There’s also a walled vegetable garden, filled with cutting flowers – all of which Marie grows for weddings, special occasions, a florist in Newcastle and a deli in nearby Rothbury.
It’s also bordered by soft fruit, which Marie uses to make jams, preserves, liqueurs and gin – some of which guests will find in their Northumbrian-inspired welcome hamper.
For more information, or to book, visit coquetcottages.co.uk