ME1 The Taproom
Situated in the heart of historic Rochester is this newly refurbished 2 / 3-bedroom home in the former Woodhams Brewery. Combining elements of an Edwardian mansion flat and an industrial loft, this large apartment is positioned in the grounds of the highly revered Grade I listed Restoration House and measures an impressive 2229 square feet approximately (26,292 cubic sqft).
The apartments have been expertly crafted by the same creative team that restored the House and they have happily broken the rules of traditional development by choosing to produce inspiring spaces with high quality finishes that expertly combine practicality with volume and light. Using a layered approach to interior design, they have achieved a delicate balance of old and new, found and sourced, to create a rich interplay of material, texture and tones. Leaseholders will be given a friends and family season ticket to Restoration House and Gardens when it is open to the public and there are two dedicated off-street parking spaces per flat.
Poised half a dozen easy steps above the cobbled yard (as if it knew it should be on a pedestal), the ‘Tap Room’ is an impressively large apartment. It’s 35ft long living space with double height pitched ceilings, exposed rafters and metal supports feels almost church like in proportions. A covenant from 1919 means that the space can no longer be used as a Taproom, but you could throw an excellent party. Large double doors connect the space to the outside at one end and at the other to the kitchen / breakfast room with its expansive curved wall of white glazed bricks, double height ceilings and bespoke units built in an on-site workshop.
Off the large entrance hallway is a second living space (or third bedroom) with two walls of white glazed bricks and a timber clad ceiling that is home to a beautiful glazed Kakalunga (Swedish wood burning stove). Off the hallway in the opposite direction you’ll find the two bedrooms, two bathrooms and a utility room. Follow it all the way round and you’re back to the main living space with its original Critall window frames.
All of the apartments share considered details that include solid brass door furniture, reconditioned old fashioned radiators, reclaimed solid wood flooring treated with wax and natural oils, natural wool insulation and high quality joinery. Paint used across the woodwork has been made by hand by the creative team using turpentine, linseed oil and natural earth pigments painted directly onto the wood without a primer.
“Unlike most modern paints, our homemade elixir feeds the wood, lets it breath and creates subtle and varying colours that change their mood as the light varies through the day or night.” The Taproom and Tower both have smart lighting systems that you can tune to your own requirements, and wiring for a smart audio system.
Ancient Rochester is home to the second oldest Cathedral in the world and is famous for being a favourite of Charles Dickens. Today its picturesque and well-maintained high street is home to many cafes, bars, restaurants, boutiques and local independent shops. There is an excellently preserved 12th century Norman castle where concerts and open air cinemas are often hosted in the grounds.
Rochester mainline station has a direct and fast service to London – 20 minutes into Stratford International and other direct routes to Victoria, Charing Cross, Kings Cross St Pancras and London Bridge. There is easy access to the M2/A2 and M20. You are positioned perfectly for exploring the Kent and Sussex coast – and only 30 minutes away from Ebbsfleet and Ashford international train stations.
Feature and images: Aucoot
Correct as of May 2019