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Joy of living in a cottage in the Staffordshire countryside

By Staffordshire Newsletter  |  Posted: March 22, 2014

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ROB AND Sue Jackson moved to Oakleigh in the hamlet of Enson, near Stafford, in 1996.

"We moved up here from Hertfordshire after a change of job," says Rob. "We intended to stay no more than ten years - but here we are still."

That's hardly a surprise when one considers that the Jacksons had found what Rob describes as "an absolutely perfect house".

He adds: "We used to come home from work and think we were on holiday, it was so peaceful."

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Rob, who ran an engineering business on Stone Business Park before he retired, travelled many business miles, and although Oakleigh was the ideal rural location, it was also extremely well-placed for rapid access to fast transport links.

"That's one of the great benefits for people looking for a home in this area," says Rob. "Oakleigh is one of the few domestice properties in this lane - everything else is farms and farmland."

Oakleigh was one of Staffordshire's "county farms" until it was sold off in 1972. It's had just three owners since then, including the Jacksons, and all have carried out some refurbishment and improvement.

One of the attractions of Oakleigh is the handy annexe. "We've had 18 people at the same time staying here for family parties," says Rob. "The property is techically a four bedroom house, but with the annexe, it's a six bedroom house.

"One of the previous owners used it as a B&B, but there are so many options for its use, perhaps as a granny flat or an office. There could also be options to carry out further development."

But Rob and his wife Sue, a retired community occupational therapist, will miss their Staffordshire cottage.

"Our son and daughter and our grandchildren all live in Kent. We've got an ideal life here, but we're missing an important part of the package, and that's being near our family," says Rob.

"We will probably downsize, and we'll miss this part of the world. Oakleigh is on a high elevation and has fabulous views over the Trent Valley. Just a short walk across the fields is the canal. It's a great area if you love walking.

"And the garden is south-facing and stays sunny all day. We will be sorry to leave."

Oakleigh offers plenty of potential for prospective buyers.

Some may be intrigued by the annexe, which sits alongside the main cottage.

A traditional gravel drive leads to the cottage, which stands well back from the road.

The drive is edged in brick and there is a substantial lawned area to the side with a variety of mature trees.

The gardens are impeccably well maintained, mainly laid to lawn, with established trees, bushes and shrubs.

There is a paved sun terrace providing excellent outdoor entertaining area in summer.

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