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BARGAIN HUNTER: PROPERTY OF THE WEEK- A pounds 200,000 COTTAGE FOR poun ds 150,000

BARNES COTTAGE, in Hampstead Norris, 15 miles from Reading in Berkshire, is the kind of property Londoners dream about. But in Berkshire a two-bedroom cottage can easily sell for pounds 200,000. Barnes Cottage, however, is on the market for pounds 150,000.

"The cottage needs modernisation," says Mark Jamieson, of Lane Fox. "About pounds 20,000 - which includes rewiring throughout and damp-proofing - will make it sound."

Until about a year ago the cottage was lived in by an old man, and it has really stood in a time warp. "You will end up with a lovely, pukka two-bedroom village house," Jamieson says. "It hasn't been spoilt."

There's no kitchen to speak of, just a tiny room with a sink, and in the sitting-room there's an original range, with a cast-iron oven and a brick shelf.

There are three rooms upstairs, one of which has a vaulted ceiling. Outside there's a lovely old cottage garden with a well. Contact Lane Fox on 0118 984 5757.