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Digital Subscriptions > Your Home Magazine > August 2015 > Our house is full of childhood memories

Our house is full of childhood memories

Clare Hantrais drew inspiration from nature when she renovated her family’s cottage by the sea

Photos Dave Burton

Clare Hantrais has special childhood memories of her cottage in Runswick Bay. ‘I grew up here and had the most wonderful childhood playing on the beach, fishing, boating and rock pooling to my heart’s content,’ she says. ‘It’s a magical place. So when my parents bought the cottage to renovate in the early Seventies it was done with future generations of our family in mind.’

The cottage was one of the first fishermen’s homes to be re-built following a major disaster in 1682, when most of the cliffside village fell into the sea. In recent years a seawall was built to prevent a similar disaster happening again, and the cottage is a landmark property among the maze of narrow alleyways and back streets, which make Runswick Bay so attractive to tourists.

Clare often browses the local galleries and antique shops to find accessories with subtle coastal references. ‘i like anything made out of natural or tactile materials such as wood, stone and glass,’ she says

‘You get used to people walking by or stopping to have a chat while you are sitting outside on the patio having breakfast,’ says Clare. ‘Although many of the properties are now run as holiday lets, there is still a great community atmosphere here. It’s a beautiful place. I wanted our children to have the same pleasures and opportunities that I did as a child growing up by the sea.’

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August is the perfect month for getting to grips with decorating and gardening jobs before the days get cooler and the nights draw in. In this issue we meet TV garden designer David Domoney to discover his expert tips for creating a gorgeous front garden that will cheer you up every time you come home, and will give your home extra kerb appeal too – very handy if you’re thinking of putting your home on the property market. However, if you rent your home, we know how hard it can be to put your stamp on it when you’re not allowed to redecorate. So, on page 36, we’ve got some great ideas for making a rental look beautiful without upsetting your landlord. Whether you rent or own your own property, many of us have compact kitchens which come with their own challenges. So on page 48 we’ve come up with some smart solutions for making the most of every inch of space. Talking of which, on page 40 we’ve found some fantastic furniture that not only looks great but has hardworking storage built in to keep your home looking streamlined and clutterfree. But August isn’t just about tackling those must-do jobs around the home and garden, it’s also the ideal time to enjoy spending time alfresco with family and friends. So this month we’ve got a selection of mouth-watering BBQ recipes for you to try (p.100), as well as some really pretty craft projects to make your summer garden parties extra special (p.60). Enjoy the sunshine!
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