Two homes to feature in BBC series

Two very different but equally homely houses will be under the spotlight tonight (Monday) in the new series of BBC show Scotland’s Home of the Year.

The homes are at opposite ends of the historical spectrum.

Caroline and John Tait live in a relatively new build in Levenwick while Shona and Allen Skinner’s crofthouse in Cullivoe dates back to 1860.

They will go up against a third house, in Orkney, to be crowned regional champion and make it to the series final.

Caroline and John moved in in 2017 and the house features a large open plan kitchen diner come living space, two bathrooms and three bedrooms including a master with walk-in wardrobe and en suite.

It also has a view looking out to sea that Caroline says “is beautiful, we just love it”.

They share the home with sons Lewis and Harry and Harry’s girlfriend Lauren.

City dweller Shona and husband Allen moved into their renovated croft house 11 years ago after originally deciding to keep it as just a holiday home.

The history and beauty of the place, however, tempted the couple even though Shona thought London would always be home and she “could never imagine myself living in Shetland”.

Its provenance dates back generations as Shona explains: “The house belonged to my great-grandparents. It started life literally as a but ’n ben.

“In about 1916 they decided to put two extra bedrooms on. Then about 30-years ago the house was offered to my father.”

The programme will air on BBC 1 at 8.30pm with neither couple privy to how they, or their homes will come across.

Shona said: “I am quite nervous, I think anybody would be.

“You are exposing what you think is your fabulous home to the whole country and beyond.”

Caroline added: “I think we will have a wee bit of a party the night the programme airs, have a few glasses of champagne and see how it goes.

“I might watch, I might hide behind the couch, we’ll see.”


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