“It’s a Marmite house,” says Stephen Smith, “you either love it or you hate it.”
Untouched since it was built in 1967, this unique concrete and glass home is a surprise find at the end of a long and winding country lane, close to Drayton Bassett Golf Course.
Designed by architect Kenneth Tuffrey for the Smith family, this unusual “upside down” design was the height of 60s chic – modernity and futuristic living all rolled into one.
With woodland views to the north, west and south, the large windows on the first floor offer superb views of the flora and fauna; expect to see woodpeckers and treecreepers.
Stephen was just 15 when the four-bedroom, two-bathroom house was built and he moved in with his parents and older brother, John.
His dad, Charles Smith, was a founding director of The Polymathic Engineering Company in Tamworth and the family were living just a few hundred yards from the factory in Fazeley Road.
However, exasperated at her husband’s workaholic nature, Stephen’s mother Olive insisted they moved further away so that he could spend more time relaxing.
It wasn’t long before Charles found this piece of land in the middle of woodland and bought it to placate his wife.
“It was quite adventurous for my mum and dad,” says Stephen, who is now 63. “It was the countryside plot that mum always wanted and when I saw the plans for the house I thought it was an unusual house – not at all conventional, which is what we were used to.
“We were living in an end of terrace house in Fazeley Road and then we moved to this place in the middle of the countryside. People just don’t expect to see something like this here – it has real wow factor. It’s a one-off.”
Inside, the house has a huge amount of wood panelling on the walls and ceiling – typifying the style of the day – and the interior is immaculate, as pristine as the day it was built, says Stephen.
“It hasn’t changed one iota; it’s like stepping back in time to the height of 1960s fashion,” says Stephen. “The kitchen is original but there’s not a scratch on it, which shows how well looked after the house is and what good quality fittings there are.”
The house has an “upside down” design, with the main living quarters on the first floor.
The ground floor houses the study, sitting room, utility room, shower room and two bedrooms. The study overlooks the rear garden and leads directly to the integrated garage.
A large sitting room also overlooks the rear garden and its double-glazed sliding doors with matching side screens enable people to relax while taking in the views. A door from the lounge leads to the utility room, which has a single base unit with work surface and inset stainless steel sink unit, space and plumbing for washing machine, plus space and power points for further electrical appliances.
The two bedrooms share a shower room, which has a corner shower cubicle, toilet and wash basin. WC and pedestal wash hand basin with complementary tiling surrounds, single glazed window overlooking the front elevation, ceiling light point, radiator.
A spiral staircase with timber panelling opens onto what the Smith family call “the drum” on the first floor, where there is a spacious open plan kitchen, lounge and dining room.
The kitchen area has the original range of matching base units and drawers with work surfaces over and inset colour co-ordinated single drainer sink unit. There is a built-in ‘Neff’ electric oven with matching four-ring hob, recess and point for additional electrical appliances.
The lounge and dining areas have double glazed full height windows overlook the front and rear gardens and there is a door that leads to an inner hallway. From there, you reach the guest cloakroom and further along is the master bedroom suite that has fitted wardrobes and an en-suite bathroom with shower cubicle, panelled bath, wash hand basin and WC.
A fourth bedroom is also accommodated on the first floor.
Stephen says that the gardens, which also have a garden room and brick-built workshop, are another draw for potential buyers.
“There are about three and a half acres but they blend into the woodland,” he says. “It’s a great place for parties, barbecues and gatherings. It’s what the place really needs; it’s time for another generation to live here.”
* Estate agent: Taylor Cole
* Tel: 01827 311412
* Guide price: £675,000