Best of British: 60 things that make Britain great

Imagine you're cut off in a far-off land. What longings would be uppermost in your mind? Here we celebrate those aspects of life that make our islands distinct and beguiling.

44. Rectory

The Old Rectory, Rodmell, East Sussex, UK. Image shot 03/2014. Exact date unknown.

In most villages today, the parson’s house is second only in grandeur to the squire’s, for these buildings were created for clergy who were by birth, education, outlook and pastime, gentlemen. The gradual sale by the Church Commissioners of many of these buildings from the early 20th century onwards has created a large pool of desirable historic, private houses. These are often delightfully set in the shadow of the parish church.

‘We require from buildings two kinds of goodness: first, the doing their practical duty well:
then that they be graceful and pleasing in doing it’
(John Ruskin)

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