I spent some time recently in my home town of Westfield, New Jersey....
I wandered around the streets and neighborhoods of my childhood,
my mind flooded with memories of growing up there,
of the friends and families I had known
and the places that had made marks on my memory.
On one walk with my sweet sister in law, Maureen,
I am sure I embarrassed her by insisting we stop so I could photograph this house....
Call me snoopy, but it had sold recently and it was vacant
and I just couldn't resist the chance to look at it more closely.
It's the Wychwood Gate House.
Everyone from Westfield knows this house.
I never really knew anything about it growing up there.
It always seemed so mysterious and enchanted.
It's set way back from the road, in a very wooded spot.
It was built as part of a very swanky development in the twenties-
"Oh, they live in Wychwood..."
So exclusive that they need a Gate House with a towering gate
and a giant key
It's hard to get the scale of this house across through photographs.
It's so tall and dramatic and intricate.
And Maureen was waiting patiently for me to get the heck out of her neighbors yard...
The texture and the detail are amazing.
I love the leaded glass and the copper finials.
The treatment of the overhangs is very dramatic and enchanting.
Love the color of the mullions.
This is the dining room nook...
Looks like something straight out of an English village.
This door leads into the kitchen.
(I know this from snooping at one of the websites that had the home listed.
There is a link at the end of this post)
In this photo, you can almost get a feel for the height of the house.
I wonder how the views are from those uppermost windows...
I bet you can see New York City.
The main Gate House has a companion gate house, in miniature,
on the opposite side of the road, with it's own gate.
Look at the amazing brick work there.
And this window and terrace...
I would have loved to snoop around a bit more in this yard, but this home is occupied,
and I didn't want Maureen to have to explain anything to her neighbors about me...
The details of the Gate House everywhere are wonderful
but homes like this need constant care.
As I peeked into the windows, I thought the new owners would have their hands full
if they wanted to bring it up to today's standards...
Astonishingly, as I was doing a bit of Google research
to share with you about this house,
I discovered that it burned the week after I was there!!!
Here is a link to an article about the fire.
They say it can be saved, and I truly hope so.
You can read more about the Wychwood Gatehouse from a Real Estate Listing here.
This amazing website has beautiful interior and exterior photos
and floor plans and maps.