AT Home with Sarah Beeny - December 2011 - (Page 36)

Village SOS THE UNUSED CHAPEL IN CAISTOR, LINCOLNSHIRE CHARLOTTE HASTINGS, A 30 YEAR OLD CONSULTANT FROM LONDON, LEFT HER CAREER IN THE GLAM, FAST PACED WORLD OF FASHION TO BECOME A VILLAGE CHAMPION IN CAISTOR’S MISSION TO BRING BACK ITS HERITAGE Though Caistor sits on a Roman road, was a Roman town and the site of a Roman fort, very few people – even the villagers themselves – recognised this. Lamenting this gap in the local history, Roy Schofield, chair of Caistor Arts and Heritage Centre, embarked on a project to create a museum showcasing Caistor’s valuable past. Though the heritage was originally at the forefront of the scheme, business and practical matters took over. The sensible option seemed to be to convert the town’s abandoned chapel into a café and heritage centre. In a locality scarce of a decent cappuccino haunt, ‘village champion’ Charlotte Hastings jumped on the idea straightaway. TOP TIP: TO MINIMISE STRESS, HIRE EXPERTS TO DO THE WORK they can, took strength of mind and patience. You can’t tell someone to step up when they are working off their own backs. ‘Putting the projects’ potential into reality was also tough, with many of the locals doubting that we could ever achieve the café’s bespoke fittings and gorgeous vaulted windows. Though the renovation is the toughest test I’ve ever faced, and at points seemed to be “do or die” the outcome was rewarding. The café, though lacking the historical theme originally hoped for, is now complete with a timeline for history enthusiasts, and is buzzing with new volunteers offering to help out every day. ‘Though happy to see the café making a profit, the project, for me, has been a dose of realism. The café is almost like a baby someone else is now raising, and despite the emotional and mental strife, I aim to further my career in other deserving schemes.’ Going off-trend ‘My working life, so far, had been largely centred around the fashion industry, and at some point along the way I had become disillusioned with the whole enterprise. My involvement with Village SOS happened by chance, after some absent-minded internet browsing on the BBC website one day. Looking for a project I could make a genuine difference to, rather than being a cog in London’s fashion machine, I applied for the ‘Village Champion’ scheme. Before I knew it, I was moving to Caistor for a year. ‘Transferring the frantic pace of the capital to laid back village life was a double-edged sword. Though I was welcomed with open arms, trying to boost the planning and construction rates in a place that had always been afforded the luxury of time was sometimes frustrating. Learning to work with volunteers, who give as much or as little time as Top: The completed village café Middle: Charlotte and Sarah on the show Bottom left: The café’s outdoor terrace Bottom right: The project receives funding 036 | DECEMBER 2011

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of AT Home with Sarah Beeny - December 2011

EDITOR’S LETTER
HELLO FROM SARAH
NEWS
MAKE IT A DATE
FESTIVE FOCUS
HOME COMFORTS
LIGHT FANTASTIC
PASTE IT UP
SARAH'S WORLD
VILLAGE REVAMP
TO LET OR NOT TO LET?
KEYS TO THE DOOR
QUEEN OF THE CASTLE
HOT PROPERTY
GREAT SCOTS
TRICKS OF THE TRADE
LODGE LIFE
VICTORIAN SPLENDOUR
FINISHING TOUCH
BEST OF THE BRIGHTS
STORE IN STYLE
BOUDOIR BEAUTIFUL
SHAKE IT UP!
FINE DINER
WHAT’S COOKING?
TOPS TOTTY
SPLASHING STUFF
NIGHT ON THE TILES
GADGETS GALORE
OPEN UP
TOTALLY FLOORED
MAT FINISH
COSY CARPETS
HOT STUFF
THE TEMPERATURE’S RISING
RADIATE THIS
FLAMING GREAT
BURN BABY BURN
DREAM HOME
GOING LARGE
SLIDING AWAY
KEEP IT IN
DRAUGHT EXCLUSIVE
DON’T BLAME THE TOOLS
GOING SOFT
ECO EXCELLENCE
WASTE NOT
BRIGHT SPARK
SUN SCREEN
STREET VIEW
BLOOMING BRILLIANT
GARDEN INVADER
GLITTERING BUYS
COMING SOON
SARAH SAYS
MANSION MARVEL
LAST WORD
STOCKISTS
PERFECT PROPERTIES

AT Home with Sarah Beeny - December 2011

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