A bungalow in the Cornish countryside has been revealed as one of Britain's most unusual homes because it has its very own railway carriage – inside.
The unique property in Ashton, near Helston, is a fully functioning home, but bizarrely has the restored 130-year-old Great Western Railway carriage within.
Jim Higgins inside the bedroom – a nearly fully restored 130-year-old Great Western Railway carriage
Owner Jim Higgins said the strange situation arose from planning regulations.
Retired transport manager Mr Higgins, 64, took over the property from his former father-in-law Charles Allen, who was forced to build it around the railway carriage.
Mr Higgins said: "The railway carriage was lived in by a local woman, Elizabeth Richards, from 1931. It was known as Lizzie's Place until she died in 1966. It then stood empty for a number of years until my ex-father-in-law came down looking for somewhere to retire. He was a master carpenter and was looking for planning permission to build a retirement home.
"He came down from Middlesex and fell in love with the spot where the railway carriage was. But when he applied for planning permission to build a bungalow he was told the railway carriage had been there so long it had 'grandfather rights'. It couldn't be moved. So he decided to build around it."
Mr Higgins said: "Living in an old railway carriage was relatively common once upon a time. But I've never heard of a house being built around one before. He actually built the bungalow as a home with kitchen and lounge, etc, but the bedrooms are in the railway carriage. And he set about restoring the carriage – called Waverley – to its original 1882 state too.
"A few years ago he decided to move away, but asked me if I wanted to move down and take over. I thought about it for a few seconds and accepted. It's such a beautiful location with fantastic sea views I couldn't refuse."
The carriage restoration project will be totally complete in a couple of months, said Mr Higgins. "It's taken a huge effort trying to make it as authentic as possible. Getting the right specifications was very hard. There's not a lot of information about the carriages."