A Horse in the Bathroom

How an Old Stable Became Our Dream Village Home

  • Imprint: Summersdale
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 320
  • Price: £8.99
  • Publication date: 8 May 2012
  • ISBN: 9781849532402

About the book

Maggie wants a house with lots of light. I need one with character. And what we do have in common doesn’t help either – we’re both stubborn.

When Derek and his partner Maggie decide to escape to the country, they don’t opt for the simple life. Instead they set about converting an old Cotswold stables in Stow-on-the-Wold into their dream home. Over the next two years, they wage guerrilla war on the Planning Office, are cursed by everything from collapsing walls to poison gas, run out of money, and meet some very strange characters – till in its final stages of construction, the place unaccountably floods.


'As a former ITN correspondent, Derek Taylor has a fine eye for people and places. Now he's written a hugely entertaining book, packed with all the funny little details that will keep you smiling.'

Peter Sissons

'Retaining a sense of humour is essential for anyone undertaking a self-build. Things can and often do go wrong. This book is a must-read for those who dream of building their own home.'

Ross Stokes, Editor SelfBuild & Design

'It's Grand Designs meets Cobbett's Rural Rides: a lively, bittersweet exploration of our English attitude to heritage and our obsession with country villages. Acidly humorous and sharply observed - and deliciously, deliberately provocative too'

Steve Haywood

'Converting an old stable into a dream home is naturally fraught with problems.'

The Bookseller