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TV presenter Owain Wyn Evans judges Wales House of the Year 

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Weatherman turned TV presenter and keen property renovator Owain Wyn Evans heads home to Wales to help judge House of the Year in new show

  • EXCLUSIVE: We speak to Owain Wyn Evans, a judge on a new BBC TV series
  • The new six-part series starts this evening and is called Wales’ Home of the Year
  • The Welsh presenter previously appeared on Wim Hoff’s Freeze the Fear
  • Owain is joined by interior designer Mandy Watkins and architect Glen Thomas

He is the Welsh weatherman who went viral online after playing the BBC breakfast theme tune on the drums, before overcoming emotions on recent TV show Wim Hoff’s Freeze the Fear.

Owain Wyn Evans’ latest role takes him in new direction, this time as a judge and presenter on the BBC series Wales’ Home of the Year.

There are six episodes, the first of which starts this evening at 7pm on BBC Wales and iPlayer, with each episode showcasing three stunning homes from across Wales.

Owain is joined by interior designer Mandy Watkins, along with architect Glen Thomas on the show, which looks to find the best homes that the nation has to offer.

It follows the judges as they visit five regions around Wales and discover a range of properties, from stunning architectural developments, to converted bungalows, to terraced houses – and there’s even an appearance of a turret.

The house with the most points in each regional episode then proceeds to the final and compete for the title of Wales Home of the Year 2022.

The winner of Wales’ Home of the Year will be announced during the final episode next month on 16 September.

Owain (pictured centre) is joined by interior designer Mandy Watkins and architect Glen Thomas for the new TV property series Wales' Home of the Year

Owain (pictured centre) is joined by interior designer Mandy Watkins and architect Glen Thomas for the new TV property series Wales’ Home of the Year

We spoke exclusively to Owain about why he choose to become a judge on the new property TV show.

He explained his love of all things property, with experience of having renovated four homes in Cardiff, Leeds and Manchester.

He said: ‘I renovated four homes, starting off with a small flat in Cardiff and then moving onto houses.

‘Home renovation is something that I’ve found really interesting, and I’ve learnt to do everything from ripping up carpets to fitting skirting boards.

‘Obviously I’ve not done any of the structural stuff, so I’m not going to be installing any RSJ supporting beams any time soon.

‘But the thing that makes a house a home I find fascinating and getting a project from A to B, and making it yours is really special.’

The new show follows the judges as they visit five regions around Wales and discover a range of properties

The new show follows the judges as they visit five regions around Wales and discover a range of properties

The judges visit a terrace home that has a dark coloured living room with a herringbone pattered flooring (pictured)

The judges visit a terrace home that has a dark coloured living room with a herringbone pattered flooring (pictured)

For the winning home, he says that he looked for individual style, something which reveals the owner’s personality and a ‘strong sense of hiraeth’ – hiraeth being a Welsh word that reflects a deep longing for something, especially one’s home.

Nick Andrews, of BBC Wales, said: ‘This will be a terrific series. If, like me, you’ve always wanted to snoop around some of the best homes in Wales the wait is over. 

‘And we won’t be alone either – Owain, Mandy and Glen will be right there with us offering insight, expertise and gut reaction. I can’t wait.’

  •  The six-part Wales’ Home of the Year starts this evening at 7pm on BBC Wales and iPlayer 

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Posh properties to see prices drop 6.5% this year says Savills

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Expensive homes are expected to see their values fall by 6.5 per cent this year, according to a leading estate agent.

Savills forecast the decline saying that buyers are more ‘realistic’ following two years of record growth in the housing market. 

However, it added that these homes – worth at least £2million – have been ‘more robust’ than other parts of the market due to a higher proportion of cash buyers and a lack of supply.

These cash buyers are less affected by rising interest rates and soaring mortgage costs – and that means values will reclaim lost ground over the next five years, to rise by 9.9 per cent, according to Savills.

But that forecast also represents a far lower rate of growth for house prices than seen in recent years, with annual gains of less than 2 per cent on average.

Estate agent Savills has forecast how values will change in the prime housing market during the next five years

Estate agent Savills has forecast how values will change in the prime housing market during the next five years

The estate agent said prime homes saw price falls of 0.4 per cent during the last three months of 2022. 

Its findings were from its own research, based on ‘experience and historic evidence’, with it defining the prime market as the top 5 to 10 per cent of the market by value. 

At the same time, the number of potential buyers registering an interest was 47 per cent higher than in the same period in 2019, it said.

Andrew Perratt, of Savills, said: ‘Although the frenzied activity seen during the pandemic has cooled, demand is still strong for best-in-class properties in the most sought-after locations.

‘Indeed, county houses across the Cotswolds and East of England continued to see modest house price growth in the quarter.’

Savills went on to explain that while the imbalance between demand and supply persists in the expensive regional market, the economic challenges have put buyers’ spending power under pressure.

This will temper demand in this part of the housing market during 2023, it said.

Country homes in the East of England have seen 'modest house price growth', says Savills (pictured: seven-bed house in Norwich's Swannington being sold by Savills for £2.1million)

Country homes in the East of England have seen ‘modest house price growth’, says Savills (pictured: seven-bed house in Norwich’s Swannington being sold by Savills for £2.1million)

Mr Perratt explained: ‘We are forecasting prices in the prime regional market to be 6.5 per cent down on average by the end of the year, leaving values where they were in mid-2021.

‘The increased cost of borrowing is likely to have a stronger impact on those markets which typically take on more debt. For example, London’s suburban and commuter zones are expected to see average prices fall by 8 per cent by the end of 2023.

‘But, for the moment at least, the quantity of premium stock available to buy remains constrained, with nearly half of Savills agents reporting a decrease in stock over the past three months, which will cushion price falls in the short term.

‘And our recent client survey indicated that there is still a strong commitment to move over the next 24 months, which will help support a recovery in prices over the medium term once we pass a period of elevated interest rates.’

Country homes in the Cotwolds have also seen values rise say agents (pictured: five-bed house in the Cotwolds' Upton Cheyney being sold by Carter Jonas for £2.5million)

Country homes in the Cotwolds have also seen values rise say agents (pictured: five-bed house in the Cotwolds’ Upton Cheyney being sold by Carter Jonas for £2.5million)

Elsewhere, Halifax revealed that the average price of a typical British home is £281,684, which is only marginally lower than a month earlier, but down £12,308 on the £293,992 August peak.

James Shaw of buying agents Prime Purchase, said: ‘In the prime regional markets we are seeing a tiered market where the ultra wealthy are driven by the house and obtaining their desires, rather than worrying about money. 

‘That outlook is not impacted by rising interest rates. If they choose to borrow it’s because it makes commercial sense, rather than they need to. Lack of stock means that if a property they like the look of comes up, they will inevitably grab it.

‘We are seeing buyers being increasingly cautious and scrutinising pricing more carefully. But due to a lack of stock there are still some rather optimistic valuations around.

‘This year, we expect to see sellers try to reach for the moon in terms of pricing. Then, if they are truly motivated to sell and have a reason to do so, they will probably have to readjust their aspirations.’

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Eight-bedroom house where 1960s band Fairport Convention was born can be yours for £6million

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The house where 1960s folk band Fairport Convention was born is on sale, and could be yours for a cool £6million. 

The eight bedroom property in Fortis Green, north London was the childhood home of the famous band’s guitarist Simon Nicol, where the group later rehearsed and thus named the group after. 

The corner terrace, which was listed for sale on property website Rightmove last Thursday, is distinguished by its tall chimney and in addition to numerous bedrooms, boasts three bathrooms, three reception rooms, and an annex.

It also has a garage which has space for four cars, as well as a separate flat above it. 

Images show off the property with an illustrious musical history in all its glory, with a grand marble fireplace featuring in both the dining room and living rooms, filled with chandeliers hanging from high ceilings. 

The eight bedroom property in Fortis Green, north London was the childhood home of the famous band's guitarist Simon Nicol

The eight bedroom property in Fortis Green, north London was the childhood home of the famous band’s guitarist Simon Nicol

The living room features plush red sofas which blend into its peach-coloured walls. It also has a beautiful fire place, wooden flooring and chandelier's in most rooms

The living room features plush red sofas which blend into its peach-coloured walls. It also has a beautiful fire place, wooden flooring and chandelier’s in most rooms 

On the second floor, images show a jaw dropping bedroom with high ceilings and three large windows which shed natural light into the room.

On the second floor, images show a jaw dropping bedroom with high ceilings and three large windows which shed natural light into the room.

The corner-terrace was listed for sale for £6 million on property website Rightmove last Thursday

The corner-terrace was listed for sale for £6 million on property website Rightmove last Thursday

The property in Fortis Green, north London was the childhood home of Fairport Convention's guitarist Simon Nicol, where the group later rehearsed and thus named the group after (Pictured L to R - Gerry Conway, Simon Nicol, Dave Pegg, Ric Sanders and Chris Leslie)

The property in Fortis Green, north London was the childhood home of Fairport Convention’s guitarist Simon Nicol, where the group later rehearsed and thus named the group after (Pictured L to R – Gerry Conway, Simon Nicol, Dave Pegg, Ric Sanders and Chris Leslie)

The living room features plush red sofas which blend into its peach-coloured walls. One of the three reception rooms next door boasts a cosier feels, with comfortable leather sofas in a snug space. 

A more modern vibe greets would-be-buyers in the kitchen with open planning, featuring white counters and light woods throughout. 

On the second floor, images show a jaw dropping bedroom with high ceilings and three large windows which shed natural light into the room. 

The garden, which is as long as a cricket pitch, features a large communal area with benches surrounding the exterior. 

The average property price in the Fortis Green area last year was £653,125, according to Rightmove. 

Listed by estate agents Tatlers, the description reads: ‘Fairport’ the inspiration in the name of infamous rock/folk band Fairport Convention who rehearsed here in the 60s.

‘An imposing residence of local importance is this detached period villa built circa 1908 affording just under 6,000 sq. ft of accommodation laid out over three floors, plus a separate annex housing a four-car garage with self-contained one bed flat above.

The entrance to the property in Fortis Green showcases beautiful wooden floors and original beams

The entrance to the property in Fortis Green showcases beautiful wooden floors and original beams 

A more modern vibe greets would-be-buyers in the kitchen with open planning, featuring white counters and light woods throughout

A more modern vibe greets would-be-buyers in the kitchen with open planning, featuring white counters and light woods throughout

The property has three large bathrooms, one of which features a his and hers sink, two toilets and marbled walls

The property has three large bathrooms, one of which features a his and hers sink, two toilets and marbled walls 

Images show off the property with an illustrious musical history in all its glory, with a grand marble fireplace featuring in both the dining room and living rooms

Images show off the property with an illustrious musical history in all its glory, with a grand marble fireplace featuring in both the dining room and living rooms

The garden, which is as long as a cricket pitch, features a large communal area with benches surrounding the exterior

The garden, which is as long as a cricket pitch, features a large communal area with benches surrounding the exterior

‘The property is offered in well-presented condition and offers a unique opportunity to acquire a spacious residence in this most desirable location.’

Copyrighter and Fairport fan James Rose, 56, who shared the listing on to social media, said: ‘I used to live in Muswell Hill and I’ve been a Fairport fan since about 1981.

‘I’d sing or whistle a tune of theirs every time I walked past.

‘These days I’m a ridiculous house-hunter so coming across Fairport on the site yesterday sent me into a perfect reverie of living in such a culturally important place.

‘They will have written a lot of those first four albums there, but if you read White Bicycles – producer Joe Boyd’s account of the era – he recorded them elsewhere.

‘It’s a wonderful house, but the worry is that for that price, a buyer will ‘improve’ it. The typical large rambling family home there is half that price.’

A spokesperson for Tatlers added: ‘It’s a brilliant opportunity to purchase this substantial family house with separate rear annex which could be further converted subject to planning.

‘Simon Nicol – son of a local GP – was bought up and founded the iconic British band Fairport Convention in 1967 and rehearsed here, Fairport being the inspiration for the band’s name.’

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‘Britain’s shortest house’ measuring just 6ft 5ins tall which ‘dates back to 1758’ goes to auction

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Room for a little one! ‘Britain’s shortest house’ measuring just 6ft 5ins tall which ‘dates back to 1758’ goes to auction with £70,000 guide price

  • ‘Britain’s shortest house’ is just 6ft 5ins tall and is on the market for only £70K
  • The unique property is found in the village of Newton Poppleford near Sidmouth

‘Britain’s shortest house’ standing at just 6ft 5ins tall has gone on sale – for the relatively small price of £70,000.

The unique property, with ceilings that may skim the tops of some heads, is found in the village of Newton Poppleford near Sidmouth, Devon.

As its name implies, Ye Olde Toll House is a former toll house, which is believed to date back to 1758.

Its yellow exterior is topped off with a thatched roof, covering walls which stand no higher than an average front door.

Despite its miniature size the interior houses an entrance porch, living room, small kitchen, a shower room and one bedroom.

The unique property, with ceilings that may skim the tops of some heads, is found in the village of Newton Poppleford near Sidmouth, Devon

The unique property, with ceilings that may skim the tops of some heads, is found in the village of Newton Poppleford near Sidmouth, Devon

The unique 6ft 5ins property, that may skim the tops of some heads, is found in the village of Newton Poppleford near Sidmouth, Devon

The unique 6ft 5ins property, that may skim the tops of some heads, is found in the village of Newton Poppleford near Sidmouth, Devon

On the listing, Clive Emson Land and Property Auctioneers described the property as: 'A charming detached thatched Toll House for updating'

On the listing, Clive Emson Land and Property Auctioneers described the property as: ‘A charming detached thatched Toll House for updating’

There’s also an outdoor space with a log store area and attic space for extra storage.

On the listing, Clive Emson Land and Property Auctioneers described the property as: ‘A charming detached thatched Toll House for updating.

‘This unique single storey property is believed to date back to 1758 and is situated in the popular East Devon village of Newton Poppleford, which is only four miles from the popular seaside town of Sidmouth.

‘The property is likely to be of interest to a home owner or those looking for a lock-up and leave bolt hole. It could also be of interest to investment purchasers.’

Bidding for the property currently sits at £70k.

You can join the auction here.

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