The Old Manse is a stunning, 5-bedroom, 4.5-bathroom, country Victorian house on the edge of Little Tew, in the heart of the Cotswolds, just over 4 miles from Chipping ‘Chippy’ Norton. Beautifully furnished and decorated, the Old Manse has two reception rooms (both with fireplaces), a fantastic kitchen and entertaining area, plus a downstairs ensuite double room (ideal for guest with mobility issues), and a superb 1-acre garden with patio. Perfectly located to visit Soho Farmhouse, Daylesford, Cornbury Festival, Heythrop and the wider Cotswolds.
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- Open Fire / Wood Burner
- Sky TV
- Parking - Up to 5 cars
- Travel Cot - x1
- High Chair - x1
- Bedding & towels
Full Description & House Rules
The Old Manse is a handsome historic, three-story, red-brick, detached family home on a quiet country lane leading into the village of Little Tew. The super-stylish yet warm and welcoming decor and furnishings extend all the way from the orangery kitchen, with its lantern roof, right up to the third-floor attic bedroom with a super-king size bed and ensuite bathroom. In front of the house is a perfectly tended parking area and front garden planted with lavender and trees. To one side is the garden gate leading to a truly magical country garden with patio.
Built in 1869, The Manse (now called the Old Manse) served as the home of the Minister of the local Baptist circuit. The front of the house is built in measurements of multiples of three, giving it a regular and solid appearance – perhaps intended to suggest the virtue of those that built it and lived in it. The most well-known Minister was Edith Gates, the first woman to be recognised to hold pastoral charge of an English Baptist church. She lived at the Manse with her sister (the church’s organist) from 1918 until her retirement in 1950; thereafter, the Manse became privately owned.
The current owners of the Old Manse have transformed the property into a beautiful home, with a blend of contemporary and antique furniture complementing the choice of Farrow & Ball paintwork and wallpaper used throughout. On the ground floor, the Old Manse has two reception rooms – a living room with two fireplaces and snug with a wood burner, both with smart TVs – a fabulous kitchen/dining room opening out to the patio and garden, a downstairs super-king bedroom with ensuite (shower room), a large utility room and a cloakroom. On the first floor are three double bedrooms, one super-king, one zip-and-link twin (can be super-king), a children’s twin room (one standard single, one small single) and a family bathroom. On the top floor, in the remodelled attic, is the largest bedroom, with a super-king size bed, dressing area, ensuite bathroom (with bath and shower), TV and plenty of room for a travel cot plus stunning views across the valley.
The outside area at the Old Manse is truly spectacular, with its extended patio and seating for 10, raised herb beds and a beautiful one-acre garden planted with mature trees, borders and several fruit trees, which guests are welcome to collect during their stay. At the far end of the garden is a pretty pond – a tranquil place to sit and watch the wildlife coming a going.
Little Tew is a delightful little village about 4.5 miles (7 km) northeast of Chipping Norton and 8.5 miles (14 km) southwest of Banbury in Oxfordshire. The nearest pubs are the Boxing Hare in Swerford (2.2 miles) or the Falklands Arms in Great Tew (2.8 miles), where you’ll also find a well-stocked village shop and café. Widen the circle a little and the choice of pubs and restaurants, from ‘local’ to top end, is excellent (a long list of the owners’ favourites is provided at the property). Little Tew is in easy reach of Soho Farmhouse, Daylesford, Cotswold Wildlife Park, Blenheim Palace, Whichford Pottery, the lido at Chippy and Bourton-on-the-Water, with its maze, model village and Birdland. Other nearby activities include horse riding, hot air balloon rides, car racing experiences, in fact just about anything you can think of to keep all ages entertained. See the Chipping Norton Guide (below) for activity details.
- Sleeps 10 guests across 5 bedrooms: 3 super king-size bedrooms, 1 twin (can be super-king on request), 1 children’s twin room (1 standard single, 1 small single).
- 5 Bathrooms: 1 ensuite bathroom (Bedroom 1) with bath, shower, W.C; 1 ensuite shower room (downstairs Bedroom 5) with walk-in shower, W.C; 1 ensuite shower room (Bedroom 2) with walk-in shower, W.C; 1 family bathroom with bath, shower, W.C; and 1 cloakroom (W.C.)
- Parking for 5 cars
- Dog friendly: 2 well-behaved dogs welcome (see ‘Dogs’ below for more details). Dog bowl and bed available.
- Private, enclosed 1-acre garden, patio and pond
- Fireplace: 2 wood burners and 1 open fireplace – wood provided for first fire
- All bed linen, bath towels and tea towels provided
- Kitchen starter consumables: teabags, Nespresso coffee pods, sugar, fresh milk.
- Cleaning starter pack: dishwasher tablets, scourer, cloth, washing up liquid, bin bags
- Bathroom essentials: hand soap, toilet paper, shampoo, shower gel
- Heating (underfloor/radiator) and on-demand hot water via oil central heating with individual thermostat controls.
- Free Wi-Fi: Gigaclear Full Fibre Ultra-Fast Broadband
- TV – 4 Smart TVs: Living Room, Snug, Kitchen, Bedroom 1.
- Full Sky HD package with football, movies and multi-screen function
- Games: boardgames, cards, chess, backgammon
- Fully equipped kitchen with toaster, coffee machine (Nespresso), boiling water tap, utensils, crockery, cutlery, glassware (champagne flutes, tumblers and wine and water glasses), bakeware, food preparation (grater, jug, sieve), blender, NutriBullet, saucepans, wine fridge, bread bin, kids’ cutlery and crockery, kitchen foil, cling film, kitchen paper, and a bread-maker in the utility room.
- Oven/hob: induction hob and double oven
- Fridge-Freezer with icemaker; extra freezer in Utility Room
- Washing machine
- Ironing board, iron, clothes airer, ceiling-hung drying rack
- Vacuum cleaner
- Baby/Child Equipment: highchair, travel cot (cot linen not supplied), stairgate
- Outdoor patio/seating area
- Garden furniture – seats 10
- BBQ (charcoal) – please provide your own charcoal
- Safety equipment: fire extinguisher, fire blanket, carbon monoxide monitor, smoke alarm, First Aid kit.
Guests enter the Old Manse through the front door and covered porch into a long hallway with a view all the way through to the dining area and garden beyond. This pretty hallway features Farrow & Ball’s Bumblebee wallpaper – based on a pattern originally found on silks in Josephine Bonaparte’s bedroom, the first wife of Emperor Napoleon. A handy antique bench is provided to sit and remove outdoor shoes. After guests’ initial arrival, entry can either be through the front door or through the garden gate in to the Utility/Boot room, where there is plenty of space to hang coats, store shoes and boots and even wash down a muddy dog in the butler’s sink.
To the right of the hallway is the main living room, with an antique-oriental feel to the décor and plenty of seating for all. To one end is a large window overlooking the front garden, with an open fire, a four-seater sofa, two armchairs and an antique butler’s tray, serving as a coffee table or card table – take care, the table top is a tray and lifts off! At the other end of the room is a seven-seater sofa, a smart TV, a small bureau, and a wood burner. On a winter’s night this is the room to snuggle up in while watching a good movie.
Opposite the Living Room is the Snug – once the family’s playroom – featuring a polished Cotswold stone floor (with underfloor heating), a wood burner, a smart TV, a three-seater sofa, two armchairs and a very cute child’s seat and footstool. A sash window overlooks the front garden, casting lots of light into the room making it a lovely room to relax in front of the fire or watch TV.
The multi-purpose central hall sits at the foot of the staircase and between the two front reception rooms, the Kitchen and Back Hall. It is furnished with a two-seater sofa (perfectly placed so that you can sit and look out at the garden through the French windows), a bureau and a large desk and comfy chair, making it a bright and light work area if needed.
From the Hall take two steps down to the striking and inviting orangery-style Kitchen-Dining area, with its magnificent double-lantern roof. This is a fantastic, fully equipped kitchen and entertaining space, which opens out through bi-fold doors to the patio and garden beyond. A mounted smart TV can be viewed from the Kitchen or the Dining Area.
To the right, the Kitchen features an over-size island with a huge preparation area, induction hob, wine fridge, cupboards and bar seating for two – perfect for children to eat at or for other guests to perch at and keep the cook company. The kitchen has every standard appliance (including dishwasher, double oven, fridge-freezer with icemaker) and more (blenders, NutriBullett, boiling water tap), plus all the crockery and glassware needed to fully cater for 10 guests.
To the left is the orangery-style Dining-Seating area which has a long wooden table that comfortably seats 10 guests (pictured with eight), a snuggler sofa and armchair and a small desk ideal for a little light work, charging devices or making plans for the day ahead. Bi-fold doors open out from the Dining Area to the patio, with seating for 10, a brick BBQ, and the magnificent garden.
Head from the Central Hall into the Back Hall, which leads to Bedroom 5, the Utility Room and the downstairs cloakroom:
Also known as the Strawberry Room, because of its delightful décor featuring strawberry wall art and floral fabrics, Bedroom 5 is a spacious, bright and light room with views to the main and herb garden and would suit a guest with limited mobility. The bedroom is furnished with a super-king size bed with bedside tables and reading lights, a dressing table with mirror, a chest of drawers and a double fitted wardrobe.
Bedroom 5 Ensuite
This ensuite shower room has real “wow factor”, with its double-height ceiling, striking aqua blue walls and extra-large walk-in shower (one small step in) with a handy built-in shelf to perch on and an overhead shower and hand-held shower head. The ensuite has a vanity unit and large Lefroy Brooks basin and toilet.
This could be just a downstairs W.C., but the gorgeous dark blue and golden palm tree wallpaper make it that bit special, as well as the great collection of reading books!
This fantastically useful room can be entered from the Back Hall or the side garden, making it both a utility room (with a bread-maker, Miele washer and dryer, ironing facilities and overhead Pully clothes airer) and a boot room where guests can hang coats, take off footwear and even wash a muddy dog in the butler’s sink. There’s also plenty of room in here for your doggy to sleep.
Head up the first flight of stairs – carpeted with banister – to the first floor and Bedrooms 2 (ensuite), 3, and 4 and the Family Bathroom:
This delightful, sunny ensuite double bedroom is decorated in calming shades of white and blue. The bedroom looks out over the front garden and lane, while the ensuite has a fabulous view down the garden and over the dining area’s lantern roof. The bedroom is furnished with a super-king size bed, with bedside tables and reading lamps, a double wardrobe, chest of drawers, and dressing table with a mirror and hairdryer.
Ensuite Shower Room
Head through an arch into the ensuite, which has a large walk-in shower, vanity unit with basin and a large mirror, a heated towel rail and feature W.C. with a Butler & Rose high level cistern. (Note: there is no door between the bedroom and ensuite.)
This very pretty, front aspect bedroom has pale pink walls with accents of cerise. It is furnished with two standard size single beds (which can be made up as a super-king double on request), with a shared bedside table and reading lamp. The room features a long dressing table with a baroque, antique mirror above. In the corner is a double wardrobe with hanging space and shelves. (The travel cot is stored in this bedroom.)
The Peter Pan Neverland wallpaper in the children’s twin room says it all… this is a room that’s perfect for smaller guests! Further appeal for children lies in a bookcase full of children’s reading books, delightful animal pictures, cushions, and a teddy bear lamp. The bedroom has one standard 3ft single and one 2ft10” single, a fitted wardrobe with hanging space and shelves and a large mirror.
Serving Bedrooms 2 and 3, the Family Bathroom has a full-size bath with over-bath shower, a wash basin with large mirror, a feature W.C. with Butler & Rose high level cistern and a heated towel rail.
Head from the landing on the first floor, through a door and up a flight of wooden stairs with a banister to:
This sumptuous, somewhat secluded, top-floor attic bedroom has sweeping views out over the garden and countryside beyond. It features a super-king size bed, with bedside tables and reading lamps, a smart TV (positioned for in-bed viewing), a large dressing area (plenty of space for a baby’s travel cot too), with dressing table, wardrobe and chest of drawers, and an ensuite bathroom. Though this bedroom has the largest floor space of all the bedrooms, it’s built into the eaves, so taller guests may be more comfortable in one of the other bedrooms.
Head through a door from the dressing area into the ensuite bathroom, which features a full-size bath – perfectly positioned by the window so you can bath and gaze at the stars! There’s also cabinet shower, a large wash basin with mirror and shaver point, W.C, towel rail, full length swing mirror and storage for personal items.
Guests will be truly amazed by the stunning outdoor space at The Old Manse. Starting to the front of the garden are two parking spaces. Pass through the garden gate where there is a small garden with a path between lavender bushes leading to the front door. To the left of the house is parking for two more cars, and to the right, behind a low wall, is the partially paved original driveway behind a five-bar gate (open for guests to park one car). Head back to the left side of the house and open the wooden side gate. This is where the outside magic begins…
Here you’ll find an immaculate patio with raised beds full of herbs, and borders bursting with flowering plants. The patio wraps around the house and includes a full-size, brick BBQ (charcoal) and dining area with a large wooden table and seating for 10. Take two steps down (with a handrail) to the bi-fold doors into the Kitchen/Dining Area, making it the perfect set-up for outdoor entertaining. (Please note: The greenhouse and sheds are not for guests’ use.) With your back to the house turn and be amazed by the one-acre garden. It is the perfect Cotswold country garden, with an immaculately mowed lawn, mature trees – with a couple of tree swings – an orchard, a spinney, paths through a wild area, borders full of flowering shrubs and border plants and a pond crammed with wildlife.
Guests are encouraged to pick apples and pears when in season to use during their stay and, when cooking in the wonderful kitchen or on the BBQ, help themselves to the herbs – rosemary, thyme, sage, oregano and mint – all marked up for easy identification!
Little Tew is a small village about 4.5 miles (7 km) from Chipping Norton and 8.5 miles (14 km) from Banbury in Oxfordshire. The village does not have a shop or pub, but don’t worry there are plenty close by and you can buy local eggs for breakfast just down the lane from The Old Manse!
The nearest pub is The Falklands Arms in Great Tew (1.5 miles) where there is also a village shop and café. Great Tew also has a cricket ground where guests are welcome to visit and watch a match.
Other pubs that are in walking distance include The Boxing Hare at Swerford and The Crown Inn at Church Enstone.
The nearest and best place to do a food shop is in Chipping Norton where you will find a great choice of national and independent stores, including:
A well-stocked Coop, M&S Food Store and Aldi, Nash’s Bakery, Oats the health food store, Trev Beadle Butchers and Roger’s Fishmongers.
Best places to buy wine and beer:
The Coop in Chipping Norton; Oxford Wine Co, Witney; Majestic in Banbury and Stow-on-the-Wold; and Hook Norton Brewery, which has a shop and delivers wine and beer.
Things to do/places to visit within 5 miles of The Old Manse:
- Soho Farmhouse
- Cornbury Festival – Great Tew is home to The Cornbury Music Festival which is held in its beautiful park each July.
- Heythrop Zoological Gardens
- Heythrop Golf Course
- Enstone Airfield: flying club, a rally driving school and a clay pigeon shooting club.
Daylesford Organic Farm, Cookery School Shop and Café is just 20 minutes’ drive away.
The Chipping Norton Guidebook (provided with the Welcome Guide on booking and at the house) lists sightseeing, activities, events, spas, and lots of ideas for eating out in and around Chipping Norton/Little Tew. In addition, you will find an extended list of the owner’s favourite Cotswold restaurants and pubs in the Welcome Guide at the house.
Walking & Cycling Guides
Stow-on-the-WoldBourton Circular-WWS Cornwell-Chastleton-MWS Harford Bridge-MWS Hinchwick-WOW Kingham Station Circular Bourton and Wyck-MWS Guiting Power-MWS Stow-on-the-Wold-MWS
NorthleachAndoversford-MWS Bibury-MWS Bibury-River-Coln-MWS Great Rissington-MWS Bourton and Wyck-MWS Guiting Power - MWS Northleach-MWS Salperton-MWS Stow-on-the-Wold-MWS
Moreton-in-MarshCornwell-Chastleton Long-Compton-Cherington Rollright-Stones Stow-on-the-Wold Miles without Styles Walk-1-Chipping-Campden-Circular-Walk
Chipping NortonCharlbury-WOW Charlbury-MWS Cornwell-Chastleton-MWS Long-Compton-MWS Rollright-Stones Spelsbury-MWS
Chipping CampdenBroadway Chipping-Campden (Circular Walk) Chipping Campden (Miles Without Styles) Ebrington Kingham Circular Laverton Mickleton Rollright-Stones Broadway Tower Circular Stanton to Snowshill
Bourton-on-the-WaterBourton Circular-WWS Great Rissington-MWS Harford Bridge-MWS Bourton and Wyck-MWS Guiting Power and Castlett-MWS Naunton-Circular-WWS Salperton-MWS
BanburyCornwell-Chastleton-MWS Long-Compton-MWS Rollright-Stones-WOW Rollright-Stones
From London – just under 2 hours’ drive:
Take the M4 then M40 to Oxfordshire. Exit M40 at Junction 8. Take the A40 to Oxford/Cheltenham. Continue on the A40 then A44/Woodstock Road to the B4022/Tew Road. After 0.7 miles, turn right onto the B4030, then left onto the B4022. After 2.5 miles turn left. Follow this road for 1.2 miles then turn sharp left. Continue for 0.5 miles. The Old Manse is on the right-hand side – a red brick Victorian house with a portico and five windows to the front.
From Chipping Norton – just under 5 miles
Take the A361/Banbury Road towards Banbury and follow for approx. 2 miles. Turn right, signposted to Little Tew and continue for 1.2 miles. Turn right again following signs to Little Tew. Follow this road for 0.5 miles, The Old Manse is on the right-hand side – a red brick Victorian house with a portico and five windows to the front.
The nearest train stations are Charlbury (6.5 miles) with services from London Paddington; Heyford (9 miles) services from London Paddington and London Marylebone; and Banbury (10.5 miles) services from London Marylebone.
- Excelsior Taxis Limited: 01608 643721
- A1 Taxis Chipping Norton: 07528 133960
- Route 55: 07463 888971
The Old Manse has 2 parking spaces on the private drive, 2 parking spaces on the paved area directly in front of the property and 1 space to the right of the property (through the five-bar gate). Please do not park on the verge opposite the Old Manse, it is strictly for that property’s use only.