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Renovation work to East Cottage

We started renovating East Cottage in June 2011 and were able to move in by January 2012.

Originally a farm workers cottage, it had been altered some decades ago. Originally it had a walk-in pantry, and a stove to heat water in the corner for washing and bathing purposes. Upstairs has since been divided to make three rooms rather than two. There is a large inglenook fire place in the front room that would have had a range within it.

Due to severe water damage we had to take the building back to the bare stone and dig up the floors. This process has meant that hopefully the building will continue to be in good working order for many more years to come. Local builder Andy Law and his team worked with Shaun to get the building back in shape.

A gravity fed hot water system fuelled by logs has been fitted with a large water tank in the roof. All the walls are insulated and the bathroom and kitchen has been modernised.

All the sash windows were painted shut and it was a huge task to clean them and restore them back to their former glory, with double glazed panes and lead weights. Our thanks to Slimlite and David Humble and his team for all their hard work. All the brass fittings were cleaned up and are now working. They are original and are the same as ones found at Cragside House.

We had a visitor who told us a great deal about Cragend Farm during the Second World War when she was evacuated here, and discovered that her family had taken East Cottage as a holiday home since 1914. Apparently, the family had a maid who they brought on holiday with them, and she slept under the stairs. The family slept upstairs, and all bathing took place downstairs in a tin bath, and the outside loo "netty" was used.

It has been a wonderful home for us, we lived there for two and half years while the other barn renovations were taking place, and now it is a Holiday Cottage again.

About the author

Lou is the owner of Cragend Farm with her husband Shaun, and deals with everything from Holiday Accommodation inquiries to egg collection from the chickens; she is the social media and web design finger-tapper.

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Find Out More About Cragend

Cragend Farm has a interesting and diverse history, from technical innovations to historic buildings. Tied in closely to the neighbouring Cragside Estate home of Victorian inventor and industrialist Lord Armstrong.