Ancient trees surround this gothic church in Suffolk, which was masterfully converted into a family home by a furniture maker.
The Grade II-listed structure dates from the late 12th century when Henry III assumed the throne in England and the gothic style was emerging across art and architecture. Known as St Margaret of Antioch – the patron saint of women in childbirth and the dying – the former church is a generational patchwork that was expanded in the 13th and 14th centuries and later renovated in the Victorian era with the addition of new buttresses and windows.
In the 1980s, the Rishangles building – located between the bustling market town of Eye and Debenham – was deconsecrated and transformed into a four-bedroom family home that retains its ecclesiastical sense of wonder.
On the outside, it’s wrapped in medieval flint work, with red brick flourishes and stone tracery windows. Step inside, and the old nave is now a wood-panelled entry home that welcomes guests – instead of Crusaders heading to the Holy Lands. Exposed beams, awe-inspiring height and brightly coloured stained glass are just some of the hallmarks of its past.
Inigo is listing the Suffolk property for £985,000. The chancel is now the main living room, with towering stained glass and chandeliers hanging from its roof and a brick fireplace fitted with a wood-burning stove, heating the space. The old tower, meanwhile, has been restored and turned into a library with a terrace overlooking the church grounds.
Meanwhile, bedrooms can be round beneath the church’s sloping roof, with local timbers and bespoke joinery sympathetically facilitating its domestic use.