Monday, 14 March 2011

The latest development on Exmouth Road

'Bicton', at the west end of Clyst Hayes Gardens

Having featured some properties in Budleigh Salterton's sister-town of Brewster recently I thought it was only right to give my US readers a glimpse of our own real estate. In fact they can choose between five newly-arrived homes on the market since realtors Jackson-Stops & Staff unveiled at last Saturday's Open Day what they call "an exceptional development" in "a unique setting overlooking a County Wildlife Site."

Readers of my Exmouth Roadies blog will know that the plot I'm referring to is what used to be the garden of Clyst Hayes House, which I wrote about at

Perhaps not as grand as the original Clyst Hayes House, but the new houses are spacious enough by modern standards

Like many Budleigh residents I followed closely the progress of this development and was even moved to write a poem about it when poor old Clyst Hayes House finally bit the dust on April Fool's Day last year. Click on for some photos of the bulldozers at work.

Looking east: the four other houses which are neighbours to 'Bicton'

Well, the dust has now settled. The excellent locally-based builders CBS have been hard at work on the project over the last year, and the five houses which have replaced the grand old Edwardian property and its attractively wild garden are now ready for inspection. I thought I'd post some Open Day pictures here if only to record one more aspect of the changing face of Budleigh Salterton.

Timber decking on the north side of 'Bicton' which boasts the biggest garden in the development

I've focused on the only one which had got carpets for the Open Day, which is a house the developers have called 'Bicton' after the hamlet of the same name a few miles from Budleigh. It's not the biggest or the most expensive of the five, but it's got the biggest and the most private garden on its half-acre corner plot.

Features like the traditional style of staircase acknowledge Clyst Hayes Gardens' link with the original Edwardian house

With its five bedrooms it's being promoted as an ideal family home, and indeed the room above the garage with its unusual layout did look like a perfect child's den.

Budleigh is reckoned to be a friendly sort of town, and the developers were obviously counting on this neighbourly trait when they squeezed all five houses onto the site.

Looking north: the view over the water meadows from one of the bedrooms

The houses all share a delightful view of the countryside on the edge of Budleigh, situated as they are overlooking the lush pastures around the Lily Brook. There's a certain uniformity about the development, but plenty of attractive features like the slate roofs and the irregular windows, the lead work and the curly bargeboards which remind one of Budleigh's grander and/or quirkier houses, so many of which have been demolished.

Naturally these modern houses include environmentally-aware features such as rain water harvest systems, and the kitchen and bathrooms in 'Bicton' looked suitably luxurious.

Perhaps hidden deep in the earth and surviving the bulldozers' efforts last year are the roots and seeds of the original garden which will assert itself in years to come. That will give each home in this new Clyst Hayes Gardens the individual touch that they all need. And it would be in keeping with the rustic air of this part of the town. The new owners will also have as neighbours the deer, the badgers, the squirrels, the rabbits, the moles and all the other little creatures who are also Budleigh residents.

For further details telephone the agents Jackson-Stops & Staff at their Exeter office on 01392 214222 or click on

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