In search of Colin’s Barn (aka The Hobbit House)

Colin's Barn

Some blundering around on the internet recently led me to read about an extraordinary place known as Colin’s Barn, or The Hobbit House (not to be confused with a self-consciously titled eco-home of the latter name built in Wales). I had to find it, so a small but intrepid band of us sallied forth to track it down. Briefly, it was built between 1989 and 1999 by a stained glass artist called Colin Stokes, on land he owned near his house in Chedglow, Wiltshire. He built it for his sheep. Apparently the council were not best pleased that neither Stokes nor his flock had been through the due planning process, and the stress of the bureaucracy may have contributed to him moving to Scotland. The ‘barn’ remains quietly dilapidating in a field.

There’s plenty more at Derelict Places but with care to keep its location secret. I’m not going to blab either, but suffice it to say (a) that it’s on private land, so tread warily and respectfully (b) despite what commenters at that site and others say, it can be found on Google maps, rather easily if you use your brain and (c) all of the stuff on these forums about rottweilers and security heavies appears to be twaddle. Or perhaps they are otherwise occupied on sunny afternoons. My only hint is to follow the horses and not the cars. (More photos at Flickr.)

Anyway, it’s a beautiful and amazing thing – and maybe the world is a better place for things like this being left dotted around in quiet corners.

2 thoughts on “In search of Colin’s Barn (aka The Hobbit House)

  1. I have been to this ‘barn’ multiple times and agree that is an amazing place. I would just like to clear some finer details up for the benefit of the future reader- Colin was not dettered by the council, but the quarry that was being built in close proximity to his sheep, and barn (he was not willing to put up with the lorrys passing through the same road as he moved his sheep). In fact, the council, to this day, do not have any worries about the ‘barn’. Colin was not officially (but in his own right) an artist, neither was he a stain glass artist; Colin was just a highly skilled stone wall builder and he bought the glass off a friend. Finally, at no point is there, or has there, been any rottweillers or security guards.

    I do not know when you last went to the ‘barn’, but currently it is being used to store building materials by the quarry and believe it or not, old toilets!!

    Thankyou for your time and effort to publicise this wonderfull place,

    Your reader xx

  2. Thanks for your interesting comment! Alas it’s four years since I went, but I’d love to go back some time 🙂

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