A Suffolk cottage where two real life ‘giants’ lived goes up for sale
It sounds like something right out of a fairytale - a house where two giants lived.
But, in fact The Giants’ House, named after its two unusually tall brothers who lived there in the 19th century, really exists.
The house in Newbourne, Suffolk was lived in by the brothers, knoown as the ‘Newbourne Giants’ who were both over 7ft tall and is now for sale for £615,000 with Bedfords.George Page was 7ft 7 inches and his brother, Meadows was just slightly shorter, at 7ft 4 inches tall and they lived in the house near Waldringfield, with their parents and four sisters; towering over their father, who was just 5ft 5 inches tall.
They worked as farm labourers living at this house with ceilings measuring just 6ft 5 inches, until they both joined a travelling circus, after being spotted at the Woodbridge Easter fair.
At the show the tallest man would hold a guinea above his head and challenge anyone to reach it. It was from here that they were hired by Samuel Whitings’ travelling show in 1869.
However, conditions with the travelling fair were reported to be appalling, and sadly they were both mistreated. George died a year after joining, in 1870 at the age of 26, having never recovered from a chest infection.
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He is buried in the churchyard in Newbourne parish church along with most other members of the Page family. His inscription reads: ‘Sacred to the Memory of George Page, the Suffolk Giant, who died April 28th, 1870, in his 26th year. He was exhibited in most towns in England but his best exhibition was with his Blessed Redeemer’.
It was this gravestone which inspired the 1926 novel ‘The Giant of Oldbourne’ by John Owen, who lived in nearby Felixstowe.
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George’s brother, Meadows, left the circus in 1875 to return to being a farm labourer. He died in 1917 leaving a daughter.
Ceilings in the original part of the cottage at their former home, now called ‘The Giants’ House’ are 6ft 5 inches in what is currently the dining room.
The owners, Roz and Rodney Shipp said: “It’s safe to say then that life at home would have been fairly challenging for the brothers, with them always having to stoop considerably while in the cottage.
“No other members of the family were tall and their father was just 5ft 5inches. We have met a great great great grandson of Meadows Page who says they were a poor rural family always on the edge of poverty struggling to get by and that the spell in the circus didn’t give them any financial break.”
Patrick Cook from Bedfords, said: “The house which began life as a small two bedroom cottage with no upstairs bathroom has been sympathetically remodelled over the years. There are now four bedrooms and about one third of an acre of grounds. The house is a short distance from the Suffolk coast with good pubs and sailing nearby.”
For more information contact Bedfords on 01394 779444 or see www.bedfords.co.uk