FOCUS ON: BRAINTREE, ESSEX BY DONATA HUGGINS

ST THOMAS COURT, OLD SAINT MICHAELS
Price: £275,000

This two-bedroom apartment features a double-height living area with exposed roof trusses and mezzanine floor. The property has been designed to maximise on space, natural light and historical features. Contact: City & Country Group on 01376 335 800 or go to www.oldsaintmichaels.co.uk

Place House, Dunmow Road
Price: £899,950

Place House is a four-bedroom house framed in medieval timber. It has rendered elevations and a mellowed tiled roof. It dates back to the late 14th century. Contact: Strutt & Parker on 01245 258201 or go to www.struttandparker.com

Shinborough Barns, Blackmore End
Price: £700,000

This impressive barn conversion with annex accommodation and outbuildings was formerly a farming estate. It has five bedrooms, three reception rooms and three bathrooms. In total the estate extends over two acres. Contact: John D. Wood on 01245 344 222 or go to www.johndwood.co.uk

NEED TO KNOW | BRAINTREE

Commuting to the City: Driving from Braintree to the City takes just over an hour. Taking the train, however, can get you into Liverpool Street in just over 30mins. From Liverpool Street, you can jump on the tube and the DLR to reach Canary Wharf in 20 minutes.

Education: While the majority of schools in the area don’t have particularly impressive academic results, the independent Gosfield School performs well. The school is co-educational and teaches from the age of 4 to 18. Boarding is optional.