Wayfarer Cottage
To book: Mrs Jane Good Ltd.
Originally a shipwright’s cottage and lovingly restored by the Whisstock family, in whose ownership it has been for generations, Wayfarer Cottage makes a perfect holiday base to explore the lovely Deben estuary and the ancient town of Woodbridge.

Wayfarer Cottage sleeps five in a fine double front bedroom, where you wake up to the morning sun streaming in, a twin bedroom with one single bed and one bunk bed – and here you really can see that a boatbuilder has been at work! – and, finally a neat little single back bedroom.

Downstairs, the cottage is resonant with old Suffolk brick floors, all muted yellows and pinks, gleaming white woodwork and old plastered walls.

The living room with its cheerful Victorian coal fire, set in the much older open fireplace, is comfortably furnished and equipped with flat-screen TV, DVD player, a super stereo system and a free wireless internet connection. The cosy dining room with an oak table and upholstered chairs, leads through to the small, but well-equipped kitchen, where again the boatbuilder’s influence can be seen and felt in the hand-crafted English Ash cabinetry and Beech worktops.

On a historical note, Wayfarer Cottage was held on a 500-year lease originating from Master Shipwright Peter Pett, who famously built ‘HMS Sovereign of the Seas’ (later known as ‘Soveriegn’ and then ‘Royal Sovereign’) for Charles I.

Launched on October 13 1637, she was at the time the largest vessel in the world, and the enormous cost of her construction helped to create the financial crisis for Charles I that contributed to the English Civil War. The ‘Sovereign’, outliving her builder by some 25 years, remarkably remained in active service for nearly sixty years as the best ship in the English fleet.

Peter Pett, who was also Lord of the Manors of Woodbridge and Ufford, had considerable interests in Woodbridge and shipbuilding there, so it’s not too fanciful to imagine Wayfarer Cottage being occupied by one of his shipwrights – a fascinating link with the past and nice to remember as you wander along the old quays down by the riverside.