Open-plan living a stone's throw from the beach and nature reserve in historic Pagham

A short drive from Chichester and Bognor Regis, Pagham not only offers a rich historical heritage, medieaval forts and the world’s oldest pram race, but is also a stone’s throw from the beach.

Whitlocks229 Pagham RoadNyetimberPO21 3QD01243 262747

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In addition, this friendly village adjoins the 600-hectare Pagham Harbour Local Nature Reserve, cited by the RSPB as one of the best places for wildlife in the UK.

No surprise, therefore, that Andy and Sandy Gifford, who are selling their home at 12 Pagham Road, relish living a five-minute walk from the sea and the reserve.

Sandy said: “You can smell and hear the sea from where we are – we go there in all weathers.

“We can see the nature reserve from the balcony in the bedroom, especially in the winter when there are no leaves on the trees, and it’s just a three-minute walk away.

“We also see pheasants and wild geese in the reeds at the bottom of the garden.”

Once a small, two-bedroom 1950s bungalow, the Giffords have completely transformed their home since they bought it in August 2008.

Andy said: “We made the garage wider at the front and put a pitched roof on it, extended it at the back to form the kitchen, plus we took the whole roof off and put new attic trusses in.”

He also added two bedrooms with an en-suite and a balcony upstairs: “It’s a really nice setting, as it catches the light from 4pm and we have evening drinks on the balcony.”

Working on their home has been a labour of love: “I did 90 per cent of it myself, bar the services of an electrician and a plumber.

“We lived in it for a year to get some ideas about how to design it and did it in phases.

“I’m self-employed and still did jobs for other people, but I used to take three to four months off at a time and did it over a period of three years.”

Open plan living and easy entertaining were key: “We have a lot of friends and a large family – it’s nice as we can all see each other when we’re working in the kitchen.”

The couple enjoy eating al fresco in the summer, escaping the heat thanks to the ‘slight sea breeze’ and ‘plenty of shade in certain areas of the garden’.

Pagham itself is a big draw and, although the couple are downsizing, they want to stay in the village.

Sandy said: “There’s something about Pagham ... You’ve got four coaching inns up the road – you can walk up there, have a lovely lunch and be on the beach and the nature reserve in five minutes.”

The village is known for its community bus, popular fetes, fairs, vintage cars in the summer and pram race, in action every Boxing Day since 1946, whatever the weather.

“The whole village turns out for that!

“There’s always something going on at the village hall, with lots of children’s clubs, plus fitness clubs and lots of things on at the weekend.”

Ultimately, the couple want somebody to love their home as much as they do: “It’s the longest we’ve stayed in one place and we’re only really moving as we want to downsize.”

Immaculately presented and deceptively spacious home with modern and versatile accommodation.

On the ground floor there is a spacious and bright entrance hall, an open-plan lounge/dining room, impressive kitchen/breakfast room with stunning views over the rear garden, two double bedrooms and a modern shower/wet room.

On the first floor, there is a master bedroom suite with a newly fitted en-suite and a west-facing balcony, as well as a further double bedroom and landing with a study area.

The secluded rear garden is mainly lawned with an extensive patio area and a detached summerhouse. To the front there is a lawned area and a driveway leading to a pitched-roof garage.

Price: £575,000