You'll be Agogs at what £3m Much Hadham property has to offer
Bishop's Stortford businessman Steve Watts and his family have transformed a converted Dutch barn into a contemporary home with a traditional twist.
Mr Watts, who founded asbestos analysis firm Life Environmental Services, of Ducketts Wharf in South Street, in 1996, has lived at Agogs in Much Hadham with wife Jane and their two children for the past nine years.
Originally from Cheshunt, they moved to the East Herts area in 1990, buying a property at the new Bishop’s Park development in Bishop’s Stortford.
Several moves later they found themselves turning Agogs into the perfect rural retreat. The attraction was instant.
“It’s a very warm house,” said Mr Watts. “It’s always had a nice feeling, even though it’s now totally different to when we bought it as we’ve renovated it all.
“The location is very special... just walking up the garden and feeling the peace and tranquillity. It really does have a special feel about it.”
The Watts family retained original features such as beams, but vistas over the countryside have been opened up by extensive use of glass to give a classic and contemporary living space featuring more than 5,600 sq ft of accommodation.
Agogs boasts a drawing room, cinema room, music room, kitchen/dining room and family room.
The master bedroom has a bespoke en-suite bathroom, dressing room and balcony, and a further four bedrooms all enjoy en-suite facilities.
It will be a wrench to leave such a labour of love, but Mr Watts explained that it was time for a change of pace and he hoped to help his children get a foot on the property ladder.
Son Matthew, a former Bishop’s Stortford High School student, is about to join the police, while daughter Ellie, who studied at Bishop’s Stortford College, is a laboratory analyst working at her father’s firm.
She lives in Agogs’ self-contained two-bedroom cottage with her partner. The property also comes with a further one-bedroom annexe, a double garage, driveway parking for numerous vehicles, a swimming pool with gym and changing facilities, and a hard tennis court.
Mr Watts said: “We’re at the stage where the kids need to be more independent and the only way they’re going to be able to get on the housing ladder is if we help them.
“It’s a lovely house, but it’s large and I’m thinking it’s time. I’m thinking ahead to retirement.”
He and his wife love the South Coast, but family and business ties will keep him connected to the area once the move from Agogs is complete.
* Agogs, Much Hadham, is on the market with Fine & Country, of North Street, Bishop’s Stortford, at a guide price of £2,995,000.
5 double bedrooms with en-suites
4 reception rooms
Beautifully appointed kitchen/dining room
Detached 2-bedroom cottage
Further 1-bedroom annexe
Outdoor heated swimming pool and tennis court
Grounds approaching 4 acres