Most of my interiors work happens here in London — from Hampstead to Balham to Weybridge. But just occasionally I get the chance to work further afield. A few weeks ago I set off up the M40 towards Oxfordshire. The village was South Moreton and the kitchen extension was immaculate. Designed by IPS-Pronorm of Richmond, it combined sleek, contemporary lines and shapes with materials that honour the house and countryside in which it resides.
On my return journey I spotted one of those brown heritage signs in Wallingford. It had been ages since I’d been to the country or enjoyed much of any culture, so I took a micro break at the castle. There are only a few walls left standing of the original structure which had been one of the most important medieval castles of the 12th and 13th centuries — as fortress for Empress Matilda and luxurious castle until Henry VIII abandoned it as a royal residence. The English Civil War brought about the castle’s refortification but it was eventually deliberately destroyed by Parliamentary forces after a long siege and and left undeveloped.
I also had a quick wander round the town of Wallingford which, in the autumn sun, was glorious. My favourite visit was to St. Peter’s Church, situated between the castle and the River Thames — a hidden, yet beautiful gem.