Through this whole house buying process I've not had the slightest lingering doubt about the house itself. It's a very ordinary three bedroom terrace with small bay windows in a cheap South Wales town. The garden is on two little levels and is south facing so there is a lot of sun (hur hur, Wales). The kitchen is at the back and the bathroom is on the first floor. It's not too big, not too small. It's nothing special or different but we had a good feeling about it when we walked through the door, probably because it's been immaculately renovated by someone with enough good taste to insert minimalist slate fireplaces. I can imagine my son running around in it happily and that's good enough for me.
Caerphilly is a strange place. It's a small, typically valleys town, except it isn't in a valley, it's on a flat area just north of Cardiff, between some small-for-Wales hills. The strangest thing is that smack bang in the middle of it, right next to a grotty shopping arcade filled with Clinton's, 99p shops and Gamestation, is one of Europe's largest moated castles. It is extraordinary to drive past Morrisons and old working men's clubs turned into gyms and suddenly come across this huge place.
I couldn't believe it when I first saw it.
I have little clue what we are going to do with the house if we get it, the only thing I have mentally decorated is my son's room. I know what things I want it to have, what a den of amazing toys it is going to be and the shade of yellow it is going to be painted.
I've never lived somewhere I could decorate before, except choosing ill advised paint colours (pink once, then light green and duck egg blue together) for my bedroom growing up.
The only other thing I know I am going to do is go to IKEA, buy lots of small cheap frames and frame up all my old postcards, paintings and strange pictures. I have so many interesting papers buried away in books and folders, I want to finally display them in our dining room, our living room, our hallway. I have a vague picture in my head of my decorative style, it involves a cacophony of shelves and cabinets of fascinating objects and meaningful images, and a lot of the colour red, but I don't know if this is going to happen properly.
While we wait for that to happen, here are some pictures of Tredegar House inside:
The Gilt Room