We live in Saffron Walden, in Uttlesford, a quiet, picturesque market town 10 miles south of Cambridge, within easy reach of London. Saffron Walden is 20 minutes from Stansted Airport, one of London's three major international airports. Uttlesford was named the best place to live in the UK in a 2014 national survey!
Matthew and Deborah are both 48. We have been married for 25 years and we have three children, Harry (20), Edward (18) and Imogen (15). Matthew is a former sports journalist who now works as a Deputy Headteacher in a secondary school. Deborah is a writer of children's books.
Saffron Walden, in the district of Uttlesford, is a pretty little market town of 14,000 people. A beautiful 14th Century Church - the largest in Essex - overlooks the medieval town.
Saffron Walden is conveniently placed for London. There is a train station at nearby Audley End and trains to London (45 minutes) run regularly. Trains also run to Cambridge (15 minutes). If you prefer to drive, London is 45 miles away, and can be easily reached down the M11 motorway in approximately 1 hour 15 minutes, depending on the part of London required, or the time of day.
Our house is a modern detached house, which is comfortable and clean. We have four bedrooms, with room to sleep five people comfortably. We have a bathroom, an en-suite shower room in the master bedroom, and three toilets.
The house is fully equipped with Broadband, satellite TV - including Netflix and Sky - and all mod cons.
There are plenty of attractive country walks in the vicinity. We live within a five-minute walk of the town centre, down pretty wooded paths, past timber-framed houses. The town offers an interesting variety of shops and good supermarkets. The market square, which is overlooked by the ancient Town Hall, hosts a country market twice a week (dating back to 1141).
Saffron Walden was antiques town of the year in 2002. There are also good restaurants and bookshops, as well as traditional English pubs.
Saffron Walden has the remains of its own castle, dating from the 11th century. Next-door is the excellent town museum. Saffron Walden has two mazes - a traditional hedge maze, and an 800-year-old turf maze on the town common.
We live within a five-minute drive (20 minute walk) of Audley End House. This historic stately home, dating from 1603, is a beautiful building set within large, landscaped grounds. It is the country's largest Jacobean Mansion. We have family membership of the house and visitors would be welcome to use this facility during their stay. During the summer, Audley End House hosts a series of open-air concerts (classical and popular). There is also a children's steam railway on the estate.
Saffron Walden is 10 miles south of Cambridge and communications to the historic university town are easy. Cambridge offers many attractions besides the university and colleges. Cambridge has good theatres, cinemas, excellent shopping, antique shops and antiquarian book shops, as well museums and art galleries. Visitors can also go punting in traditional fashion on the Cam.
Other places of interest in the locality are Ely Cathedral (45 minute drive), a magnificent Gothic cathedral that dates from 673; and Thaxted (10 minutes), with its historic 14th-century Guild Hall. During the summer Thaxted hosts Morris Dancing.
Bury St Edmunds is a 45-minute drive away with its Georgian Theatre (one of the three oldest in the country); shops and antique shops, and West Stow Saxon Village. We are also within a 30-minute drive of Newmarket racecourse; and an hour from Huntingdon, birthplace of Oliver Cromwell. Nearby is Duxford Air Museum (15 minutes), which stages historic aviation displays during the summer months, and hosts the American Air Museum. The pretty Suffolk and Essex coasts are also accessible for trips to the seaside.
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