A glen of peace and tran­quil­ity


You can’t hear traf­fic in the gar­den, you can’t be seen from or see the main road – it’s like an oa­sis of calm

THE house is beau­ti­ful, the lo­ca­tion is per­fect – but the gar­dens swung it for Rose­mary and Colin Fin­nie when they first spot­ted Helensburgh home The Glen for sale eight years ago. Wind­ing wood­land paths, a pretty wa­ter­fall, fruit trees and colour­ful shrubs fill the shel­tered space which ex­tends to around half an acre.

“It is re­ally lovely, all year round, and very pro­tected be­cause of the old Vic­to­rian walls which sur­round it,” ex­plains Rose­mary.

“There are stone cir­cles and step­ping stones, then you go up a few steps to the ap­ple trees and plum trees – and I have my bee gar­den, full of plants and flow­ers which en­cour­age bees and but­ter­flies to come.”

She adds: “The lit­tle paths take you down through the trees to the side of the burn, and I’ve spot­ted herons there. It’s an in­ter­est­ing gar­den to ex­plore and very safe and pri­vate.

“It’s un­usual to have a house, so close to a town cen­tre, which feels like it’s miles away from any­where. You can’t hear traf­fic in the gar­den, you can’t be seen from or see the main road – it’s like an oa­sis of calm.”

The con­sid­er­able charms of The Glen, a five-bedroomed de­tached home on the town’s Vic­to­ria Road, ex­tend be­yond the gar­dens.

This bright and spa­cious prop­erty in­cludes a lovely lounge, which has an in­glenook fire­place and a wood burn­ing stove; a stylish din­ing room, with slid­ing pa­tio doors lead­ing into the rear gar­den; and a won­der­ful break­fast­ing kitchen and fam­ily area.

“This is my favourite room – I can sit on the sofa, fac­ing the win­dow and watch the birds vis­it­ing the bird ta­ble,” smiles Rose­mary. “It’s very peace­ful and I’ve spot­ted 39 dif­fer­ent species so far.”

She also has a soft spot for the lounge, with its dra­matic red wall and vi­brant art­works.

“I was ner­vous about the red paint at first, but I love it – and with Elvis and Mar­i­lyn on ei­ther side of the fire­place, it is re­ally dra­matic,” she laughs.

“This is the fun bit – we call it the mu­sic room, be­cause there’s a juke­box in there too – and then the sit­ting room with the wood­burn­ing stove is the cosy bit.”

The house was built by the pre­vi­ous owner to the Fin­nies, as Rose­mary ex­plains.

“He was in­cred­i­bly fussy about it, so we knew we were get­ting a very good house,” she says. “His at­ten­tion to de­tail was in­cred­i­ble. He even made the brick­lay­ers take down a wall of bricks be­cause it wasn’t quite right! The qual­ity of the crafts­man­ship is in­cred­i­ble.”

The ground floor of The Glen also in­cludes a handy util­ity room, with an in­te­grated freezer and space and plumb­ing for a wash­ing ma­chine and tum­ble dryer, and a fan­tas­tic leisure room with an im­pres­sive sauna-style cabin and gym area.

A stair­case leads up to a gallery-style hall­way which pro­vides ac­cess to the five bed­rooms and the fam­ily bath­room, com­plete with Jacuzzi bath.

The mas­ter bed­room has its own dress­ing area and a three piece en-suite shower room, and there are three fur­ther dou­ble

The half-acre gar­den at­tracts many dif­fer­ent species of birds and is pro­tected by Vic­to­rian bound­ary walls

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