It was 39 years of hard graft in the building trade that spurred Allen Hamilton on to create his own stunning countryside manor.
Taking inspiration from many of the properties he had worked on over the years, Allen set to work creating his own ideal home.
From stables to a tennis court, electric wrought-iron gates, a triple garage and even a sauna and steam room , it’s not surprising Allen decided to call the property Thisuldome – pronounced ‘This-Ul- Do-Me.’
He said: “I was originally going to call it seven-acre manor due to the land, but then I came up with ‘This-Ul- Do-Me’ because that’s exactly what it does.”
It took Allen, who is a stone mason by trade, around 10 months to complete the detached property in 1998. During that time, he project-managed the build himself.
He said: “It all went according to plan because I project-managed the build and it was my trade afterall. I had around 20 people working on it and after it was complete, I held a party for all the workers here.”
Before investing in land in the village of Iveston however, Allen lived in a smaller property in Whickham.
He said: “I worked with an architect on the design of the new house and I guess I’ve picked the best bits of all the properties I’d worked on over the years. You could say it was a real labour of love.
“Due to it being in a conservation area, there were some stipulations, such as it had to have a slate roof and timber windows.”
And today the grand stone-built property with its stone pillared entrance and Georgian-style sash windows blends effortlessly into its countryside setting.
Allen said: “It was important that the house was both bright and airy. I like large open spaces, rather than small ones and I love the countryside compared to the town.”
Inside the house exudes elegance with its high ceilings, cornicing and chandeliers. It is also neutrally decorated throughout to contrast with traditional style fireplaces and dark wooden beams.
Accommodation within this expansive property includes welcoming entrance hallway with galleried staircase, formal dining room, lounge, breakfasting kitchen and sitting room. There is also a sun lounge to the back of the property which has a special built-in bar area.
“The bar is great for entertaining friends, while the sitting room is perfect for just unwinding and relaxation,” said Allen, who has since retired from the building trade.
The breakfasting kitchen has a range of cabinets with built-in appliances. There is a central island as well as double doors which open into the sun lounge overlooking the garden. The sauna and steam rooms are also on the ground floor.
To the first floor are four double bedrooms, the master has an en-suite bathroom with separate shower and dressing room. There are two more bedrooms both with en-suites, while the remaining bedroom has access to the family bathroom, which is fitted out with a range of stylish fixtures and fittings.
The gardens are very much a feature of the property. There is an al fresco dining area, while a landscaped lawn leads to a stable block and an additional three acres of land. A tennis court completes the outdoor space.
Iveston is an exclusive village in Consett, County Durham, which offers commuters the best of both worlds. There are countryside pubs, two golf courses and Chinese restaurant all close by.
“There is a good restaurant in Iveston called the Pavilion that’s worth a look. It’s easy to commute anywhere really as the property is only two miles from Lanchester and 10 miles from Durham or Newcastle. Public transport is good as there are local buses and a train station at Durham for connections north and south,” said Allen.
Despite this being Allen’s dream home, he said it’s time to downsize.
He said: “I may well build another property though on a smaller scale. I’d ideally like to stay in the area.”
Allen said the property could suit a businessman or woman, someone with a young or extended family.
He said: There is definitely scope to develop the land further.”
Thisuldome Manor, Iveston Lane, Consett, County Durham is for sale through Your Move Premier at £1.3m, tel: 0191 388 2129.