You wouldn’t think it to step outside, but this Sunday is officially the start of British Summer Time. The clocks jump forward an hour on 25 March to give us all more time in the sun and it’s all down to the man who built this house in Primrose Hill.
Elsworthy House, Primrose Hill, £15m
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This seven bedroom detached family home on Elsworthy Road is designed in a local vernacular called Willett Style. A mixture of Arts and Crafts and Queen Anne Revival architecture, this avenue was built in phases between 1875 and 1911 by Willett Building Services, a well regarded firm of the time. William Willett loved the buildings so much, he kept one of the houses for himself.
When riding his horse one summer morning, he noticed how many of his neighbours’ blinds were still down and came up with the idea of daylight savings time. He published a pamphlet on the subject, ‘The Waste of Daylight’, that got attention in Parliament, not least from a young Winston Churchill, but Willett died before he saw his idea passed into law in 1915.
Fast forward to the present day, and the house has been lived in by four generations of the same family who bought the freehold from Eton College, so this is the first time it’s been on the market for 60 years.
At the helm of the most recent transformation is Lucinda Sandford, the original owner’s youngest grandchild, who is a respected interior designer in her own right. Eight years ago, her family home was her first big project. There’s a self-contained flat, an attic and wine cellar, and a dining room that seats 24 guests, with a period ceiling and bronze chandelier by Porto Romano. Sandford has added a kitchen and orangery leading out to the private garden to add to the house’s legend.
Call Aston Chase on 020 7724 4724