Could this be the oldest house you can stay at in Suffolk?

The Ancient House in Clare is one of the oldest in Suffolk

The Ancient House in Clare, one of the oldest houses in Suffolk, is available to rent for your holidays - Credit: The Landmark Trust

Bearing the date 1473, this medieval timber-framed building is one of the oldest places you can holiday at in Suffolk. 

Managed by conservation charity the Landmark Trust, the Ancient House in Clare is available to hire as a holiday let. 

Offering fantastic views of the St Peter and St Paul's churchyard, the first thing you notice about the house is the elaborate pargetting, a distinctive form of raised plaster decoration common in East Anglia. 

See the Hamelden crest and the wild men carved into the window frame

See the Hamelden crest and the wild men carved into the window frame - Credit: John Miller

Images on the building include the arms of the Hamelden family and two wild men of the woods carved into the oak window frame, as well as the arms of the de Clare family. 

Because of the nature of lime plaster decaying over time, these designs are unlikely to be original. 

The house is full of tiny characterful features

The house is full of tiny characterful features - Credit: John MIller

The house was probably built by Hamelden Family, ether to house a chantry priest, or to live in themselves. No one is sure about the houses original form, but it seems likely that a 14th century building stood on the site. 

This was likely expanded at the end of the 15th century, when an architectural showpiece was added behind the cross wing, and the houses orientation was changed to face the church. 

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In the 1920s, an American tried to buy the Ancient House with the intention of shipping it across the Atlantic, but he was pipped to the property by a Charles Byford – who bought the house and gave it to Clare Parish Council. 

In the modern day, the house is split between a holiday let managed by the Landmark Trust and the Clare Ancient House Museum

The modern kitchen has an electric oven and a fridge

The modern kitchen has an electric oven and a fridge - Credit: John Miller

Split over two stories, downstairs the holiday let has a comfortable and well lit modern kitchen with an oven and fridge.

The traditional living room comes equipped with a woodburning stove

The traditional living room comes equipped with a woodburning stove - Credit: John Miller

The living room is furnished in a traditional style, with exposed wooden beams visible in both the walls and ceilings, adding to the character of the space. 

The bedroom at The Ancient House feels like something out of a period drama

The bedroom at the Ancient House feels like something out of a period drama - Credit: John MIller

Upstairs the bedroom, which has an ensuite bathroom, continues the theme of the living room, with its high vaulted ceiling and leaded oriel window giving it the feel of something from a period fiction book. 

Find out more about the Ancient House in Clare at landmarktrust.org.uk/search-and-book/properties/ancient-house-4525.