Take a look around this welcoming Essex villa

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It took the owners of this elegant Edwardian villa some time to find their forever home. ‘We wanted a house with lots of character and must have viewed over 30 properties but just couldn’t find the right one. We felt very dejected.

‘Then one evening we went to view this house and knew instantly it was for us. It had period features in abundance – encaustic tiled hall floor, large fireplaces and high ceilings.’

When they went back to view it in daylight, however, they realised how much work it needed and that the decor was crying out for an update. ‘The nursery had Liverpool United wallpaper, and one of the bedrooms was in turquoise and mustard.’

The owners, who work in journalism and oil production and live in the house with their son, began structural work around three months after they moved in. ‘The kitchen was tiny for the size of the house, so we knocked through to the dining room to create an open plan kitchen-diner.’

The owners also waited a while before choosing the look for the house, opting finally for a backdrop of neutrals. ‘Because it’s such an elegant house, we wanted the interior to combine a grand look with a homely feel.’

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