Renovation story – The Mint in Rye

It was love at first sight for Jo and Barrie when they came across the Mint in Rye 5 years ago, immediately recognising the potential this town house in Rye would have. Built in
the 15th Century, The Mint was originally part of a Hall House and was later divided into a separate dwelling.

From the detailing to the front of the house you can tell that the first floor would have been jettied in the 16th Century and the exquisite quatrefoils and mullioned windows are still the most notable feature from that time.

The couple made another excellent discovery when they were able to locate the deeds of the house that dated back to 1704. They learned that over the years it had been both pub, shop and home with an interesting mix of owners – including a candle maker, a wig maker, a wheelwright, a cordwainer, a hairdresser and a gentleman farmer to name a few.

Keen to restore this wonderful building to its former glory, Jo and Barrie started from scratch. They took up floors and scraped back wallpaper and paint to reveal beams that had been hidden or painted over. Everything had to be stripped by hand as the council do not allow sandblasting on listed buildings in the area, as it can damage the structure
of the wood.

They sourced materials from local reclamation centres and have integrated them beautifully using local craftsmen. Their carpenter was extremely talented, ‘there’s not a right angle in the building’ said Barrie when he was explaining the difficulties the carpenter had to deal with.

They changed the kitchen totally, moving the work area to the rear and then creating the open shelving in the dining room to create the storage necessary. The house has been painted throughout in a subtle shade of white – 'Stock' by Little Greene which gives a fresh warm backdrop.

The owners knew they wanted to make it into a holiday house for others to enjoy and Jo felt ‘It should be as nice or nicer than where you live’ and so that was what they strove to create.

Not only is the building itself beautiful and historic, the owners have brought together their finds from local markets and antique shops to mix old and interesting items with quirky individual pieces. They wanted the interior to be sympathetic to the history yet not scrimp on the home comforts of today.

They love wandering around the town of Rye and searching through the vintage shops.  A favourite in Rye is McCully & Crane Art Gallery in Cinque Port Street where they found works by a local artist Luke Hamman which now hang in the sitting room. They also enjoy going further afield to Hastings Old Town and St Leonards where there are a myriad of places to find old treasures.

View The Mint in Rye here...