Looking for a three bedroom pad for a weekend (or longer) break away? Somewhere that’s incredibly cool and beautifully designed? Well, stop the search right this minute! Godney Arts House is all this and much, much more… and we’re more than a little bit in love with this very special place to stay.
Tucked away in the village of Godney - three miles from Glastonbury and a short stroll from one of our favourite pubs The Sheppey - Godney Arts House is a stylish indie gem. It’s exactly the kind of place we were hoping to discover when we started Somerset cool… but it’s even more than that!
The house has real soul and that’s down to owners Jane Peck and Simon Ledson, who’ve poured theirs (and their hearts, Jane’s awesome interior design skills and artist Simon’s contemporary paintings) in to lovingly renovating the Georgian farmhouse Jane originally fell for 36 years ago.
“When I first bought it, you could stand on the flagstones and see the stars twinkling through a hole in the roof,”
Jane told me - and I could immediately see how much the house means to her. When I stepped through the front door myself, I absolutely knew why.
Some places just give you that tingly feeling. I felt it when we bought our own house and I felt it again walking through the doorway of Godney Arts House.
It’s not only a place with history and beauty, but as Jane and Simon have done most of the work on the house themselves, they know every beat of the building. This - along with Simon’s art bringing the walls to life and many of the features in the house having a story to tell - has contributed to the creation of a home with real personality. Put it this way, we'd love to pretend it was ours on a few days away!
The house interiors are a perfect mix of old and new - as Jane and Simon put it “eccentric retro flirts with tradtion” - and I can feel that flirting alright! :) I wandered from room to room 'oohing' and 'ahhing' at quite a lot! The winged stone horse above the fireplace in the living room is stunning (and very heavy, Simon assured me).
The beautiful copper table was designed by Jane, made by Simon and is perfect for relaxing around at happy, long mealtimes with friends and family.
The tiles in the hallway were created by Jane’s son Jethro Macey and won an Elle Decoration British Design Award (you can see them behind Jane in the pic below). The original shutters have been painstakingly restored and are totally wow!
Yes... there’s still all the stuff you’d expect too! There's king-sized beds in every bedroom (the master is a retro stunner by the way).
There are lovely en-suites, gorgeous views, a pretty garden a stone's throw from the river - but for us, it’s the imaginative details that set Godney Arts House apart. It’s the funky attic room you definitely weren’t expecting!
It’s the wall decorated with colourful, cool book covers (spot the theme).
It’s Simons artwork ‘left foot’, picturing left foot flip flops he found on a Thailand beach.
It’s the 'surf, dive & ski' poster, the flooring made with flagstones rescued from Glastonbury abbey after the dissolution of the monasteries and it's the hall door handles... ‘reclaimed’ from an old mental hospital in Wells when it closed it’s own doors!
In fact, a lot of what you see in the house is for sale too - Simon’s art and many of the gorgeous bits of furniture. Jane and Simon wanted to create a living gallery. A place they can add to and change, as and when pieces are sold. For us, this brings another cool dimension to their unique home from home and the house will constantly evolve because of this different approach.
All in all, Godney Arts House is definitely out of the ordinary and that makes us beam! Stay there. You’ll love it as much as we do. Jane still loves it so much that she sometimes sneaks over there herself to pretend she’s on holiday… and we don’t blame her in the slightest! :)
Our review in three words (or four if you’re feeling argumentative): A wonderful one-off!
Update 2018: And there's more... there is Thornreed Studio! It's Bed & Breakfast for two of you in the barn conversion where Jane and Simon live - and of course it's very Somerset cool. As Jane describes it...
"a quirky fusion of retro loft & industrial cool".
At the end of the garden is the Sheppey river, so you can spend time spotting the kingfishers (and otter if you're lucky) and it's a great base to spy the nearby starling murmurations. Magical.