Property floorplan
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Hill Cottage

Hitchwood Lane, Preston, Hertfordshire, SG4 7RY


5 3 3

Property Highlights

  • Grade 2 listed detached house
  • Five Bedrooms
  • Three reception rooms
  • Driveway with parking for 10 cars
  • Annex with kitchenette and shower room
  • Wrap around gardens/paddocks
  • Set in approximately 4.5acres
  • Village location

Property description

A Grade II listed 17th century country house with a separate annexe, planning permission to build additional accommodation and garaging, and approximately 4.5 acres of gardens and paddock with countryside views

The property was originally two cottages which were built in the mid 17th century and were altered and extended in 19th and late 20th centuries. It is a timber framed building with roughcast and brick extensions and a steeply pitched roof which was replaced by the vendor in September 2023. The vendor moved into the property in 2015, extended it further in 2021, and has undertaken a refurbishment programme which, in addition to the new roof, included rewiring throughout, new radiators in 2015, a new oil fired boiler in 2017, and a replacement septic tank in 2022. The extensions to the property added an en suite shower room at one end and a reception room, entrance hall and utility room with a mezzanine above at the other end. The planning permission for these extensions also included replacing some existing sheds and storage with a new two storey building with garaging, stores, and ancillary accommodation but this work has not yet been started

About the house

The property is set well back from the road on a hillside with views to the rear over paddock land with a herd of deer, and views to the front over the valley towards Hitchwood bluebell wood. It is a peaceful rural location but is only a mile from local amenities in Preston village which has a primary school and a pub. For a wider range of amenities, it is only 11 minutes’ drive from Hitchin which has trains to St Pancras in just 33 minutes for commuters.The house now has over 2,100 sq. ft. of accommodation with three reception rooms, an open plan kitchen/breakfast room, a utility room with pantry, and a cloakroom on the ground floor. There is also a bedroom with en suite on the ground floor and four further bedrooms, an en suite bathroom, a shower room and a mezzanine on the first floor. There is also a 255 sq. ft. outbuilding which can be used an entertainment room or as a self-contained annexe.

About the House cont'd

The plot of approximately 4.5 acres has landscaped gardens and paddock land which is mainly in front of the property. It is accessed via a long drive which is shared with just one other property. The private drive divides into two with one branch leading to an extensive gravel parking area and the stores and sheds where the new garage/accommodation building is planned. The other branch of the drive leads to the detached outbuilding. This part of the drive also passes a stable block in the paddocks but this hasn’t been used for a while and is in need of some maintenance.

Ground Floor

The entrance door opens into the hall which was added by the vendor. It has a porcelain tiled floor which continues into the adjoining snug, and the utility room. An alternative entrance in the older part of the property leads into a porch with a door to the cloakroom.

Reception Rooms

The snug is part of the most recent extension and is overlooked by the mezzanine above. It is triple aspect with windows to the front and side and French doors to a paved patio garden at the rear. There is a feature fireplace with an electric stove. The dining and sitting rooms are part of the original 17th century building. The dining room has solid oak flooring, exposed ceiling beams, dual aspect windows to the front and rear, and a fireplace with a log burning stove. The sitting room is also dual aspect and has an inglenook fireplace, and exposed beams and timbers. It was originally two rooms and has space for a study area as well as seating.

Kitchen/Breakfast Room

The kitchen/breakfast room has a range of made to measure, solid wood full height, wall and base units which include glazed display cabinets, drawers, integrated bin storage and corner cupboards. There is a larder cupboard which includes power and space for small appliances. Complementary work surfaces incorporate a breakfast bar and a double Belfast sink. Appliances include two full sized Smeg ovens, a fridge/freezer, a wine cooler, and a Miele dishwasher. The breakfast area has space for a table and chairs and double doors to a paved terrace in the garden.

Utility Room

A glazed door connects the kitchen to the utility room which has a range of base units and wall shelves, a sink, and a door to the rear. There is also a walk-in shelved pantry.

Ground Floor Bedroom

A door from the sitting room leads to a ground floor bedroom which has windows to all four aspects including a glazed bay to the front which was added by the vendor. A sliding door leads to an en suite shower room which is a further extension by the vendor and has a shower cubicle with a rainwater and standard shower, a concealed cistern WC, a vanity washbasin and built-in shelving.

First Floor and Principal Bedroom

The first floor landing has windows overlooking paddock land to the rear which is home to a herd of deer. The principal bedroom has dual aspect windows, exposed beams and timbers, and several built-in cupboards and wardrobes, as well as eaves storage. The en suite has a free standing bath with tap and shower attachment positioned by the window with views over the paddock at the rear. There is also a separate shower cubicle with rainwater and standard showerheads, twin vanity washbasins and a concealed cistern WC.

Other Bedrooms and Shower Room

There are two further double bedrooms and a single bedroom on the first floor, which share a three piece family shower room which has a WC and a washbasin set into an array of vanity storage. One of the double bedrooms has a range of built-in wardrobes, and the other has a door to the mezzanine which has a sloping ceiling with Velux windows, and space for a seating, play or study area or for sleepovers.


The detached outbuilding has an extensive paved patio and raised decked area in front with a gravel fire pit beyond, and has views over the property’s paddock land towards Hitchwood bluebell wood. It is used as an entertaining venue with bi-fold doors from the decking into the main room which has laminate flooring, space for seating, and a kitchen area along one wall with a range of units, a Blanco sink, an integrated fridge/freezer, an AEG oven and a microwave. The building also has a shower room and an area off the main room with dual aspect windows and space for a bed, and has also been used as a self-contained annexe for extended family or guests. It has air conditioning and heating, and there is vehicular access via a branch off the main drive

Planning Permission

The planning permission allows an existing shed and storage to be replaced with a two storey timber framed building with an open bay parking area for two cars, a garden store, and an open fronted storage area for the bins. Attached to this, the ancillary accommodation has an entrance door to a hall which has stairs to the first floor and access to a dual aspect playroom with two sets of double doors to the drive, and a door to a cloakroom. On the first floor there is a guest bedroom and an en suite shower room. Full details of the planning permission can be found on the website of North Herts Council.

Garden & Grounds

The wraparound gardens were landscaped in 2017 and are a particular feature of the property. The front garden is sheltered by walls and includes a paved terrace outside the kitchen/breakfast room with space for outside dining and entertaining. Paved paths wend round the garden which has several further paved seating areas, one with a gazebo over. There are established beds and borders with mature shrubs including roses, and mature trees one of which has a treehouse. At the rear there is a paved terrace outside the snug, and a vegetable area with raised beds.


The Hertfordshire village of Preston is about a mile from the property and has a primary school, a cricket club and The Red Lion Pub which was the first community owned pub in the country and was voted North Herts CAMRA Pub of the Year in 2018. There are a country walks in all directions.For a wider range of amenities, the property is just 4.8 miles from Hitchin which has a range of bars, restaurants, and shops. There are three gyms and indoor and outdoor swimming pools, three local theatres and the market square hosts many events including street food evenings and specialist markets. Hitchin has a range of schools including Hitchin Girls’ and Boys’ Secondary Schools which are both rated outstanding by Ofsted.The A1(M) is just over 5 miles away and the M1 at Luton is 7 miles away.

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