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You may be wondering where in the country I am. This piece of fruit offers two vital clues.
Not only is this county famous for its agriculture, growing wheat, barley and rape seed,
this country residence behind me is home to an important scientific discovery,
one that keeps you and I firmly rooted to the ground.
On today's show
we're helping a couple find an English country treat
to go alongside their slice of American pie.
And we've got mouth-watering properties on the menu,
some of which come in generous portions...
I wasn't expecting anything this size.
..And others that aren't quite to taste.
Er, it's a little small for a master bedroom.
..And we dish up something that's totally irresistible.
Can you say that again for me then?
This is what I want.
I'm in Lincolnshire and it was here at Woolsthorpe Manor
that one of the county's most famous residents
observed the falling of a single apple.
Now many before him had seen apples fall, but it was Sir Isaac Newton
who first questioned the scientific implications of such a simple event.
Now, we're not hoping to rediscover the laws of gravity,
but we are hoping to make some discoveries of our own
that could have a significant impact
on the lives and living arrangements of one lucky couple.
Lying up against the east coast,
Lincolnshire borders eight other counties,
including a tiny 19-metre stretch that's shared with Northamptonshire,
making it the shortest county boundary in England.
Lincolnshire's landscape varies from the 50 miles of attractive North Sea coastline
to the low-lying marshlands of the Fens.
Such unspoilt vistas have been preserved partly because there's no major motorway network here.
The extensive patchwork fields of rich, fertile soil
have been shaped by agriculture for more than 4,000 years
and generate more fresh produce than any other county.
With much of its land given over to farming,
there's little room left for the small population who live here,
but some might say that makes it the perfect place
for those chasing a truly rural escape.
So for potential buyers looking for some peace and quiet,
the lack of a major motorway is actually a major positive,
and it's not the only one.
The house prices in Lincolnshire are some of the lowest across the country.
The average detached house here will cost you £128,000.
Now that is an astonishing 28% lower than the national average.
If you head to Harmston you could get an attractive family home
for a fraction under £390,000.
This four-bed property has a sitting room with an inglenook fireplace,
two further receptions and a large kitchen/breakfast room.
Or further south in Grantham you could live the country dream for £825,000.
This elegant four-bedroom house has an immaculate kitchen
and spacious reception rooms designed to take in the views
across the delightful rear garden.
But if you can dig deep to the tune of £1.5 million,
you'll get a serious amount of house
in the form of this grandiose Victorian abode in Northorpe.
Built in Norman revival style, it has eight bedrooms,
a bright country kitchen and opulent reception rooms
featuring colossal cornicing.
And this beautiful property sits in grounds of six acres
that reach as far as the eye can see.
Well, Lincolnshire certainly has an abundance of rural retreats,
so let's hope our property search helps today's buyers
find a perfect slice of country living.
Today's house hunters are Stuart and Van,
who live in this bungalow near Northallerton.
Van is a Yorkshire lass born and bred,
and Stuart has spent most of his working life in the county.
But when they retired two years ago,
they decided to spread their wings in search of a new adventure.
At the moment we have a property in Florida, in Naples. It's very nice.
We're a couple of miles away from the beach, we can cycle everywhere,
we can walk to places.
Um, it's just a great lifestyle.
With their transatlantic aspirations satisfied by the Floridian sun for half of the year,
they're looking for a new location this side of the pond
to see them through the summer months.
We do like the English countryside
and we want somewhere where we can enjoy that.
-One of the things I do want is a good golf course within the area.
-We do need to have that.
-It's a must.
-Because we both play golf.
Not only must the location match their recreational needs,
but they also want more amenities to hand as well.
This village just doesn't have the facilities that we want,
there isn't a corner shop.
In this village we have to get the car out just to go for the newspaper.
And Stuart has a clear and simple philosophy
on how to support rural life.
Obviously, you're not going to do all of your weekly shop at the local corner shop,
but you need to use it, you need to go to the pub,
-you need to use the local...
-Yeah, prop the bar up.
Yeah. And have a bar meal there once a week.
Go to the local restaurants, use them.
Cos if you don't, they won't be here in another ten years' time.
So, aside from more local facilities,
what type of property are they looking for?
We're not looking for a large house,
we're looking for something no bigger than our existing property,
we certainly will be happy with slightly smaller.
We only want a garden that is manageable.
It must have at least two bedrooms.
If not a kitchen/diner as one,
it must have the ability to be able to create the open-plan atmosphere that we like.
And the fourth must-have for me,
it must have, or must have the ability for us to put together,
an en suite bathroom off our main bedroom.
And Stuart has very particular ideas
about what he wants from the outside space.
One of the things I did when I first moved in here was to set up this vegetable patch.
And when we move, I really must have an area where we can put the same sort of system in here.
To find the perfect English countryside to complement their American lifestyle,
they've decided to head south, but what has drawn them to Lincolnshire?
This is the area that we decided was within a distance of Yorkshire that people would come,
and would give us somewhere that we know a little bit about but not a lot about.
Their bungalow is just about to go on the market,
so let's find out from a local agent what it's worth.
This is an immaculate property in a village in North Yorkshire.
I would value this property at £355,000.
So what's the final budget for this Lincolnshire move?
Our budget for the new property is around about £275-280,000.
The problem is that it's becoming an all-too-familiar tale
that village shops, local pubs and local post offices
are closing down all across the country.
In 2009, there were 400 closures of village shops.
In Lincolnshire people are certainly taking things into their own hands.
Cooperatives are becoming more popular
and they've already got two in this county,
so fingers crossed there'll be more following suit soon.
As for the house, we need to find something compact,
it's got to have a contemporary interior
and a south-facing garden.
Let's get going.
Stuart and Van want to be within reasonable travelling distance
of their old mates back home in Yorkshire,
but they also have friends down in Cambridgeshire,
so we'll be concentrating our house search on the villages in south Lincolnshire
between the bigger towns of Grantham and Spalding.
We've got some great homes on offer to tempt our buyers,
but as ever I'll be keeping my lips sealed as to the prices.
And to top it off we've also got the mystery property
which could add an unexpected historic dimension
to their house quest.
Oh, great shot.
Wow, that's a fantastic shot!
-Lovely to meet you, Van.
-Nice to meet you.
Nice to meet you, Denise.
Was it the golf courses that first enticed you down to Lincolnshire?
-We certainly need a good golf course.
Wherever we live we need to be within a short distance of a decent golf course, yes.
-I'm presuming your time in Florida means you've had plenty of practice?
You've been having all this snow, rain, hail, freezing cold weather
-and we've been basking in the sunshine.
-Rub it in! Rub it in!
-But Yorkshire's also beautiful, it's a great place to live.
So why Yorkshire to Lincolnshire?
I've been there all my life
and we've got no dependents now and nobody to look after,
it's time for ourselves, we can have an adventure and move on.
So long as we're not too far away from all our friends there, it's going to be good.
Not only will you be close to your old friends, you can meet new ones,
get stuck in to community life.
-We do, yes. I used to be a parish counsellor in the village that we used to live in
so, yeah that's the sort of thing I want to do.
I want to get involved in the community.
I play some tennis, I'd like to be able to go to a tennis club and join a club
and not just play golf, you know, play tennis as well.
Meet people in the local pub.
-Yeah. That's important.
-Yeah, very important, of course.
So we've got to get you going on this adventure.
How urgent is the move?
Well, I had a phone call yesterday while we were... as we were driving down here,
and the estate agent who's working for us
thinks he might have a buyer for us,
and we only put it on the market last week, so that's good news.
-Brilliant news! And it means the pressure is on to find you the perfect home.
Come on, that's enough golf, let's get going.
So for £275,000 Stuart and Van want to downsize
into a cosy house in south Lincolnshire
that has at least two bedrooms.
They've specified an en-suite to the master bedroom
and the ability to create a kitchen-diner
as they both prefer a modern open-plan layout.
Outside they'd like a manageable south-facing garden.
Fundamental to the move
is to be within walking distance of a buzzing village
that has a few shops and a public house where they can socialise.
And lastly, the location needs to be within easy reach of a golf course.
So, with all of that in mind, it's time to tee off.
How did you make your decision in Florida?
We rented a property over there, and as soon as we got there,
and looked at the community and how everybody accepted us straightaway
and were so friendly, that was just a done deal.
Within three weeks we'd bought a property.
Well, we haven't got three weeks,
we've got just a couple of days to find their summer digs,
so let's get straight to our first property,
which is in Billingborough towards south Lincolnshire.
At the heart of Billingborough is a spring known as Spring Wells,
which provides a focal point for the village.
It's a relatively small place, but has a shop, a post office,
a small bank and not one, but two pubs.
Just a short walk from the village centre
takes us to the quiet cul-de-sac where our first house is located.
And here we are!
-Well, this looks quite...
-It's a nice house.
This is big, yes. I wasn't expecting anything this size.
No, I thought you'd find us a tiny little place.
-What are your feelings, Van?
-It's very nice actually.
-I just can't wait to get inside.
-I thought you might enjoy the palm tree. A taste of Florida...
Well, that's the outside, you're right, let's have a look indoors.
Immediately the size of this modern property
is a really pleasant surprise.
It was built just 15 years ago and inside should really suit
their penchant for the more contemporary style.
Well, our first stop is the lounge.
This is a nice size.
I recognise those wall lights.
-They're the same lights as we have at home.
My first question was going to be,
how does this compare to your current home?
-Exactly the same lights.
-The same lights, they've good taste.
Not a huge space, but it's quite light.
The windows are nice, the windows at the front,
the side and then the French doors at the back.
-It's a good start.
-It is a good start.
Positive. A bit of a smile there.
Great. Well, as you can see, it leads on to another room
-so let's have a look round there.
So it opens out into this.
Not as large as I expected, whether our dining table would fit in here.
BOTH: I'm not sure it would.
-It's quite a large one.
-It's a nice room.
-Nice, light and airy, but I'm not sure our table would fit in it.
How big is the table?
-It's a table I'd like to keep.
OK, that was my question.
Does the house have to fit the table or if you found the right house,
would you compromise on the table?
-Yes. I think that's...
-Obviously, we would, yes.
-You can't live for a table, can you?
-No, you can't.
I don't know, some people can.
We like the idea of having the kitchen/dining room,
so people, you can talk... When you're cooking, you can sit and...
You don't feel alone in the kitchen.
Reservations about the proportions seem to be somewhat contradictory
as they did say they were looking for somewhere smaller.
It seems the idea of scaling back in theory is one thing,
but the reality is quite another,
especially when they've got prized possessions to fit in.
Fortunately, we've got another mealtime option to run by them.
So come through and tell me, well, if this sort of kitchen size with some space to dine would work?
It's a little smaller than I would like, but I suppose it could work.
-It's nice, isn't it?
-It's nice, a nice kitchen.
-I like the units.
I think the only thing is the... As we said before,
not being able to talk to our guests while we're cooking.
-Just a different layout.
-Just a different layout.
It does have that lovely utility space out there
and a downstairs bathroom.
-That leads straight out onto the garden as well.
-Well, you're keeping an open mind, I hope.
-Very much so.
-Let's have a look upstairs because there is a lot more to this property.
Unexpectedly, space seems to have become a contentious issue at ground level,
so time to take it up another level to see how the first floor fares.
-We've got a lovely galleried landing here.
-It is nice.
It's nice. Makes it nice and open.
And first two bedrooms.
Not the largest, but I think they're plenty adequate and you've got nice light.
A good-size family bathroom.
The master bedroom.
Oh, this is nice. Oh, look at that!
-And a dressing area.
-Nice dressing area.
It's lovely. His and hers dressing tables as well.
The little extras make all the difference, they can make a room work for you.
-This is a nice big space as well.
-Yes, it is.
It's a nice big room and with that area on it, it's lovely.
And something else that I know is important to you,
there is an en suite just behind here. Come and have a look.
Oh, this is nice.
This is nice, I like this.
Yeah, brand new, just done.
-You can see the fittings, the shower is lovely.
How are you feeling now? The smile is widening.
Well, it's a lot more spacious upstairs.
It can't be, I know, but it seems bigger upstairs than it does downstairs.
-But it's very nice.
-It is, it's lovely.
-Very nice. I like this.
But that's not all -
up another set of stairs there's also a family shower room
and the last two double bedrooms which are flooded with light from the skylight windows.
Overall, this property certainly isn't lacking when it comes to accommodation.
Inside there's plenty of room to entertain and put up guests,
but outside, will the garden be the perfect place for Stuart's veggie plot?
So the good news about your garden
is that it is southwest facing.
Oh, that's lovely, yes. It's a nice garden.
It's a lovely garden. The only problem I've got is my vegetables.
I have an area that's probably about...
half the size of this garden that I use for vegetables at home.
It's something I would want to do when we move.
That's interesting, I thought this garden would be the right size for you.
And given that you're away six months of the year, perhaps you wouldn't want to do that.
-But you need more space.
-As a garden, it's lovely...
-It's a lovely garden. If there...
-If there was a veg-planting area.
An area around the corner, hidden away, that would be fabulous.
Well, it could be a compromise you're willing to make
when you find out how much this property is worth
which is what we're going to discuss now. So come over here
because you can get a good look at the garden, and more importantly, back at this house.
Van, I'm going to start with you.
Oh! I don't know. It's very hard.
-Um, I'd say probably about 275.
-I would go 285, maybe 290.
-You think that would be a fair sum for this property?
-Well, it's a lovely big property.
Property's on the market at £250,000.
-It does surprise me.
-It's another consideration, then.
That smile's coming through again.
-It certainly gives you a lot to think about.
-It does, it does.
So why don't you have another little meander round
-and I will see you later on to see what you've come up with.
But there's a lot to think about, so get considering.
-Thank you very much.
-All right. Bye.
Well, there you go.
They thought it was too big for them, then they thought it was too small,
but overall they get a lot of house for their money
and you can see the little cogs going round in their head.
But I thought they wanted to downsize, so that's what we still have to explore.
So at a surprising £25,000 under budget,
this large, modern house is laid out over three storeys
and is on the market for £250,000,
and at that price they'll only have to pay a 1% stamp duty
which could save them more cash than they anticipated.
It comes with five bedrooms
and the master bedroom has its own en suite.
Downstairs there are two reception rooms,
a newly-fitted kitchen/breakfast room,
and the garden has that south-facing aspect.
And what's more, the property is situated in a village
that has all the vital amenities open for business.
This garden's lovely, it faces south, it's not overlooked, it's a nice garden,
but there's nowhere for me to grow the vegetables.
If I grew them in the garden we'd step out of the French doors
onto cabbages and cauliflowers which is not really ideal.
It's a lovely property, it's very, very nice, it's been beautifully done,
but I just think the layout is not quite what we're looking for.
-A-ha! You found your way back out of the TARDIS.
Well, that was the first property, we've got a lot to do so let's keep moving.
Van and Stuart have chosen Lincolnshire for its central position
and the value for money the county offers, but beyond that,
they know little else about the area.
So a good starting point is a visit to Lincoln where they are meeting up
with local expert Brian Taylor for a guided tour.
Lincoln is the county's oldest city.
Its heritage started back in the first century
when the Romans conquered Lincolnshire and built a fortress here.
One of the few remains left from the original Roman town is the Newport Arch.
AD 47, the Romans arrived here at Lincoln and this became a colony town,
which meant the legionnaires could retire here.
This is the northern entrance exit to that Roman city.
Started in the third century, this archway,
and it's the only Roman archway in the British Isles through which traffic can drive.
With over 2,000 years of history, the city's long legacy can be traced through its architecture.
But it was probably the Normans who left the finest reminders of the past, including the majestic castle
built by William the Conqueror in 1086, and the magnificent cathedral.
The original cathedral building was damaged by fire and an earthquake
and, apart from one wall, it was rebuilt in medieval-gothic style during the 13th century.
But maintaining this prominent landmark is a continuous task.
Running across the front of the cathedral you see a medieval frieze.
If you look on the left-hand side you can see the lighter ones,
that is being recreated by our cathedral stonemasons.
The old frieze, which dated from probably the 1140s at least,
that was so badly polluted, they had to take it down and it took 12 years
for our cathedral stonemasons to faithfully recreate that frieze.
Over a million pounds every year is spent keeping the cathedral in shape and works manager Carol Heidschuster
is taking Stuart and Van behind the scenes.
Through a dedicated workforce of craftsmen and women,
preserving the cathedral's stonework, sculptures, leadwork and stained glass,
is done using processes that have changed little since the medieval period.
There are over 700 plain and historic stained-glass windows
in the cathedral which become dirty and brittle over time
and it's a painstaking task to repair them.
This is a training panel.
-It's to show the different elements of putting a stained-glass window together.
And the design of that is taken from a design in the cathedral.
Now as a little surprise, here's one we made earlier.
And we'd like to present this on behalf of Lincoln Cathedral
welcoming you to Lincolnshire and hope you find your dream home.
-Thank you very much.
Oh, that's beautiful. Thank you.
With a fine souvenir from their time in Lincoln,
they'll need the perfect Lincolnshire home
where it can hang pride of place.
We're travelling 20 minutes east for our second property,
into the quiet countryside of Gosberton,
seven miles north of Spalding.
Gosberton is quite a large village with a good selection of facilities,
including a doctor, a dentist, two shops and a pub.
And right in the heart of the village is our second house.
But despite its central location, it has a real sense of being off the beaten track.
Tucked at the end of this very long driveway is the property I want to show you.
-Have a look at that.
-This is a surprise.
-So, first impressions?
-Yes, I like it.
-Let's have a look inside.
It's an impressive approach up to the house through a generous front garden
and already I think they're beginning to feel the potential here, but downsizing this is not.
First room - the kitchen.
-Come in here.
-Yes, I like that.
-Is this more you?
-Yes, it is.
-The ability to have the more open-plan look.
-Yes, it's nice.
-Yes, I like it.
-Would your big glass table fit in there?
-Can we have a look?
Do you want to have a look? Sure.
I think, at a push, we'd get it in.
Yeah, we don't need anything else in the room, we don't have a sideboard.
We only have the table because you're next to the kitchen
and you can store everything in the kitchen.
Well, not everything, because all your white goods are out there,
so you've got a huge utility room as well.
-Oh, lovely, yes.
-And that leads on to the garden.
It's still not the hugest space, but it's just the layout that seems to be...
-Yes, I think it is.
I think it is, yes. It seems to have more space, usable space, for us because of the way we like to live.
Fantastic. The kitchen/diner is hitting all the right notes.
So with the cooking and eating sorted, let's find them somewhere to relax.
So the other side, a similar-size space but it's all dedicated to the living room.
-Again, the dual aspect windows.
Light coming in from both sides.
-All of that is modern and contemporary and so is the fireplace,
but what I love about the fireplace is that it's a working open fire, so it adds that rural feel I think.
-Yes, it does.
-This is nice, yes.
-It's better than nice, go on.
-Oh, it's a lovely surprise.
All right. Well, out here you've also got a downstairs cloakroom,
-they've made good use of the space, but let's have a look upstairs.
There are three bedrooms in this house.
Just to our left, here, we've got one of the smaller guest rooms
but lets have a look at this bedroom over here.
And this one is currently being used as the master bedroom.
Oh. Um, it's a little small for a master bedroom.
Yeah, I can see what you mean.
As I said, it's CURRENTLY the master, I'll show you another one
which has previously been the master. So if you think of it as a guest bedroom what do you think?
This is about the size of our guest bedroom at home.
-It is, yes.
-So, yes, this would be more than adequate as a guest bedroom.
-And it's got a lovely view.
-Oh, can I have a look?
Oh, this is nice, you look right down the drive. And the lake.
-So a good guest bedroom.
-Yes, it is.
-Let's have a look then at what could be the master.
They may have to compromise on size in this house,
but they are getting one more bedroom than they asked for.
-So here we are.
-Oh, this is interesting.
Yeah. And it is slightly bigger and the positioning is great, just look out there.
-Oh, yes, that's beautiful.
-You can really take in that lake.
Yes, I like this. It's not big, but it's big enough, I think.
-Yes, nice size.
-You like this place.
-I think so.
I can tell because you haven't said, but there's no en suite.
Well, we... THEY LAUGH
We thought you might have something up your sleeve.
I tucked it away in that wardrobe there.
Sorry to disappoint you, I haven't.
But when you see the bathroom you might understand why there's no en suite.
-Let's go and have a look.
This is the amount of space they've devoted to the bathroom.
-This is a nice bathroom.
-It's a lovely size.
-Yes, it is.
-It is grand.
So with a bathroom this size, would you still need an en suite?
How do you feel? It's not the biggest house, really.
I suppose it could be workable for a while until we could get a solution.
It's worth thinking about, yes.
I like that - "It's worth thinking about." You haven't written it off.
-That's the spirit.
Well, Stuart, there's a lot to be positive about outside, starting with the garden's aspect.
This garden is south-facing...
-..from the back here.
So come out and have a look.
-What do you think?
-This is lovely.
-It's a lovely garden, yes.
I mean this house is just sort of a little island, isn't it?
-In amongst... You're very near to people, yet you have your own space.
It's an oasis in the middle of the village, it's lovely.
-Golf club - only a mile and a half away...
Sunny evenings out here, you've got a patio space, and I think there's enough room for a vegetable patch.
-But you're the expert.
There is. You can certainly use this corner here and it wouldn't impinge on the garden. That's big enough.
It's certainly big enough, as the garden here wraps itself all the way around the property.
This house ticks a lot of the right boxes for both Stuart and Van, so what do they think it's worth?
-It is nice.
-Nice? How nice?
-Very nice, yes.
-More than nice.
-So how much do you think it's worth?
-Oh, your turn.
Ah, you forgot, didn't you?
I forgot about this, yes. Let me guess. 265?
I might push a little bit more.
-Well, that's close.
Would it be in the running even at that price for you?
-It's a possibility.
-Yes, I think it would be a possibility.
-Well, get this - this is on the market at 249,995.
Five quid short of 250 grand.
-Again back in the 1% stamp duty.
-There you go.
-You've done well.
And there's more to explore, so why don't you have a wander and I'll see you later?
For a fiver less than £250,000,
this house is yet again under budget,
leaving loads of money left over
to put towards flights to Florida.
Located in the village centre,
this handsome detached property
is in a great position
to take advantage of the local amenities
without compromising on privacy.
Outside there's room for growing vegetables
and inside the open-plan kitchen/diner
makes the perfect place to cook and consume the crop.
There are three bedrooms
and a massive family bathroom,
but will they be able to reconfigure the layout
to squeeze in their much-desired en suite?
-From that post here...
-To about here.
To about here and then go back to...maybe there.
Yeah. And you could get dressing area, bathroom and study.
I could see myself living in this property, it's a very nice property.
With a little bit of an addition to one side I'm sure we could manage
to make that into a very, very nice place.
The location's great, you come up the driveway, the garden sits around the house, I can have my vegetable patch.
It's a lovely house, just the sort of house that we were looking for.
I think they're in love with this house.
So much so I'm not sure I'm going to get them out. Hello?
Come on, it's not yours just yet.
We've still got the mystery house to look at
so let's get a move on.
So, with Stuart and Van reflecting on the two properties
they've seen so far, the first day of our house hunt draws to a close.
With a budget of £275,000, Stuart and Van want an English country home in Lincolnshire
to complement their American winter abode.
So far our search has served up two great houses.
It's an oasis in the middle of the village.
But words can't even describe what's coming up in the mystery property.
-This is speechless.
After yesterday, it's very clear that for Stuart and Van this move is all about the lifestyle.
The property details, yes, they're important, but they're looking for open-plan living.
You certainly get open spaces here in Lincolnshire, and property number two seemed to do it for them.
Today, it's all about the mystery house and while it's a property they would never have looked at,
if open-plan living is what you want, it's what they're going to get.
-What would be your worst nightmare for this mystery house?
-What would be the worst nightmare for you?
Well, not having outside space, I think, would be the real nightmare.
-We do need somewhere to be able to sit outside, to barbecue, do a little bit of gardening,
relaxing, and for me to grow my vegetables.
Well, Stuart may have to rethink his planting methods
for the mystery property, which takes us back out west
towards Grantham and into the attractive village of Folkingham.
This small village grew out of what was once a meeting place for traders, farmers and robbers.
Today the market square forms its hub with tearooms, a pub and even a chocolate shop.
But the square is dominated by a 17th century former coaching inn
and behind its historic Georgian facade, our mystery property is revealed.
Before we go in and have a look at the apartment, it is an apartment...
-..so that we set the scene there.
Obviously, we have been looking at detached homes for you.
-What are your feelings about that?
-It's not something I would have looked at.
-We've thought about an apartment maybe in the future.
It's certainly something we wouldn't have to worry about looking after when we're not here.
-Just shut up the door and go.
-So it's all about fitting your lifestyle, really?
-Mmm, I think it is.
All right, I can see Van's face going, "Show me this apartment!"
-Just show me it!
-I'm going to show it to you because I am convinced you will be impressed.
This ground-floor mystery apartment is a low-maintenance option,
making it an ideal lock-up-and-leave for our buyers
who are essentially ex-pats for six months of the year.
This is lovely, isn't it?
-This is drama, high drama.
-Oh, the kitchen!
-This is speechless.
-This is lovely.
-This is wonderful.
This is what I want.
Let's just preserve that moment. Can you say that again for me, Van?
-This is what I want.
You see, I knew you would like it.
This is the sort of living, the space, the kitchen and the living area being as one.
The kitchen is all brand-new, you've got oak worktops, fridge and freezer are in here
-but towards the back you can put your washing machine, etc.
-It would be a shame to put them in here.
And it's very modern and fresh and clean.
'It's a fabulous start.
'Not only does this place have the modern open-plan living arrangement they're after,
'but it's combined with an historic elegance that they never imagined.'
What a lovely fireplace this is.
They obviously put this canopy in so that you could use it as a real live fire.
You can. You can indeed.
You can then again look back at the size of this room.
-That big glass table in the middle of the room, maybe.
'And when the fire's lit in that enormous inglenook fireplace,
'maybe they could be tempted back for the winter months as well.
'But let's see what's on offer in the sleeping quarters.
'Down the long hallway there are two double bedrooms,
'the smallest of which has another enormous fireplace,
'but we're going to take a look at the larger of the two.'
So this is one of the two bedrooms. Nice and light.
-It's lovely and light.
-What do you think?
-It's a little bit small.
You'd need to use a bit of imagination because it is unfurnished at the moment.
-That's right, yes.
-So you know, take some time,
do your measurements etc, but you could get some good wardrobes on this side, and a bed.
'Now there isn't an en suite here, but right at the end of the hallway
'there's a spacious, modern family bathroom.
'And with a tour of the flat complete, it's time to view the secluded garden.'
So here's your garden.
It's an apartment, so you've got a fitting garden. It's not the hugest,
but you've got lots of little spots I think you could enjoy.
So here, sitting out of an evening, glass of wine.
Up there is a lawned area, potentially, or it could be your vegetable patch.
It could be, yes. It wouldn't be a big one but it certainly would be adequate.
And then if you lead out that way, you've got a communal space,
so you could spend some time with your neighbours, and on the other side another patio area,
so lots of little spots.
Little spots, yes, to go around, follow the sun round -
I don't think it's on this bit, is it?
No, it's not south-facing here but it is feeling quite warm, isn't it?
Yes, it's a sheltered spot, yes, and in the summer it could well be a little sun trap.
I could just imagine sitting here with a glass of wine of an evening.
So you're still open-minded towards this property?
I think we are, yes, because I think the kitchen and living space
is really good, it's really exactly the sort of thing we're looking for.
-Well, it all depends on the price, doesn't it?
Van, I'm going to start with you.
-I know, a bit high maybe.
Well, that's your...I don't know... I'm not going that high. 225?
And you are warmer than you've been before.
I'm afraid, Van, you lose this one.
-The price is 229,950.
And you were just under, there, but around about the right mark.
-You have that wander round anyway and start thinking about what you'd do and I'll see you later on.
At £229,950, this apartment is again under budget,
to the tune of some £45,000.
It's one of ten luxurious modern apartments
which have been tastefully converted from an historic former coaching inn.
There are two double bedrooms, a family bathroom
and huge open plan kitchen, dining and living areas,
ideally suited to their preferred way of living.
And rather unusually for a property of this type,
it comes with its own private garden as well as communal areas.
Now, they have said they want to downsize,
but are they really ready for such a step?
I think the open-plan kitchen/dining/living space is quite nice,
it's a workable area. There's a lot of lounge there to work with.
It's just a shame that it lacks a bit of storage, for my mind.
But I suppose there's such a large area about us that maybe a mezzanine would fit in.
As a property, it's a lovely property, and this room,
this space, the fireplace and the light, airy space of this room is lovely,
and that's the sort of thing we were looking for.
-It is lack of storage space that would be the problem for me, and the lack of garden, in all honesty.
-Yeah. You would miss your garden.
-I'm not quite ready yet.
-Maybe in ten years' time I'll be ready for something like this.
That is it, the end of the amazing adventure in Lincolnshire.
-You've seen all the houses, let's find somewhere for you to sit down and have a think. OK?
Lincolnshire has a rich farming tradition
and one of the county's most famous exports must be its sausages.
But currently the Lincolnshire sausage can be produced anywhere in the country,
so five years ago, a campaign was established
to get protected geographical indication status
so they can't be called a Lincolnshire sausage if they're made anywhere outside the county,
which should give a real boost to the county's smaller butchers and farmers.
The earliest recorded reference to the recipe dates back to 1886
and I've come to Market Rasen where butcher Nick Bradley is going to demonstrate
the art of making an authentic Lincolnshire sausage.
-Hi, how are you?
-Good to see you. I've got my apron on...
..washed and scrubbed up and I can see you're ready too.
Yeah, we're going to make 20 pound of Lincolnshire sausages.
This looks like we've got proper meat here.
Yeah, proper shoulder of pork...
-No rubbish, just quality stuff.
-Now, what's the ratio of meat to other ingredients in a proper Lincolnshire sausage?
Once it's coarsely ground, the meat is then seasoned with white pepper,
salt and sage, which gives the sausage its distinctive herby tang.
It's then blended with water and bread rusk, but I can't give you Nick's exact quantities
as that's a closely guarded secret recipe that's been in his family for over 50 years.
How do you feel about other areas making sausages that they then call Lincolnshire sausages?
They should make them in Lincolnshire.
If it's a Lincolnshire sausage, it should be made in Lincolnshire.
It's a bit like Melton Mowbray pork pies are made in Melton Mowbray,
it's the county's recipe, it should be made in Lincolnshire.
Pig intestines are soaked in salt and water
to make the casings, and after being shown the ropes, it's my turn to have a go.
So nice and slow, gently does it.
-The slower you go, the better, so away you go.
-Nothing's happening. Oh...
-That's it now, that's it.
-Oh, it's a bit thick.
-No, keep your fingers on there.
-Oh, yes, on there, sorry.
They'll be perfectly all right. We don't mind any sort of size.
SHE LAUGHS They're perfect, they're perfect!
Nothing wrong with them at all.
'Well, it looks like my sausage-making skills won't get me to the top of the class,
'and now lessons are over, the real proof of the pork is in the tasting.'
You get the taste of the sage, the pepper,
not overly strong, just a nice flavour our Lincolnshire sausage should be.
Absolutely. It's got flavour, It's not too spicy...
Yeah. There's no gristle, there's just shoulder meat, the best you can get.
How many of these do you eat a day?
We make 200 pound, but I'm not going to eat them all!
It's only a matter of time to find out whether the campaign is successful,
allowing Lincolnshire folk to bring their Great British product back home.
So the mystery house went quite well, a great reception from them,
although they do still have some misgivings about the amount of space.
But we've shown them a good variety at some great prices here in Lincolnshire
and now it's time to find out if any of our homes are for them.
-Well, hello, you two.
The end of our journey together,
getting you on this move down from Yorkshire to Lincolnshire.
-And we've seen a lot of properties, haven't we?
You've had a bit of a chance now to mull it over a bit, so I'm going to go through them one at a time
and see if you've made any decisions.
Let's start right back at the beginning with that wonderful five-bedroom house,
which you didn't expect to have quite so much space.
Well, I thought the upstairs was much better than the downstairs.
-It was the layout of the downstairs that you had big issues with?
Yes, the kitchen...
The kitchen and the dining room weren't next to each other so you couldn't even knock them together,
you were stuck with the rooms as they were.
The second property, that was a surprise -
it had that sweeping drive and it was set right back
so you didn't really know it was there.
From the outside it was lovely, and the inside.
The rooms were smaller than I would have liked
and the kitchen, although it was lovely
and maybe the way we would have liked it,
I still felt it was a little bit small and confined for me.
The garden, though, was spectacular, the way it just engulfed
the whole property, plenty of room for your vegetable patch.
-It was super garden.
-And looking down onto that lake and the woodland.
Yes. The view from the bedrooms, it was just stunning.
-And then there was the mystery.
What a mystery!
Definitely one that you would not have put on your list, I am guessing.
-Not at all.
The first impression when I walked through the door
was stunning, the space in the main living area.
But sadly for me it lacked a lot of storage area and the bedrooms were small.
It's the sort of property that
living away for six months of the year,
you'd think, that's what you want, to be able to lock it up and go away.
And maybe if I was a little bit older and not as active as I am now
and didn't really want to do the garden, that would be an ideal property.
Does that mean this experience has helped you re-prioritise or reassess what your needs are?
-I think yes, it has helped.
-Yes, I think it has. It really has.
You know, now we can look at things with fresh eyes again
and see what our criteria is.
Can you tell us, were any of our properties something that would
hit your shortlist, that you might consider putting an offer on?
Of the three, I think the second one would certainly be...
-The house with the drive.
-Yes. There's a lot of ticks for that.
So your next steps are to speak to the agents?
I think, I don't know, do you want me to do that or do you?
I'm going to leave that one entirely to you. You are the man who has the final, the final decision.
-I'd like to talk to them about it, yes.
-Well, it's certainly been a pleasure sharing this part of the journey with you.
-Thank you all very much.
It's been a good experience. Thank you.
For Van and Stuart, after so long living in Yorkshire,
the move down to Lincolnshire was always going to be a big adventure.
I think property two could work for them and at least they're going back to have another look,
but it may take just a bit more time before they're really ready to make their escape to the country.
I'll see you next time.
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