Hillcott Barn looked more like a Tuscan monastery than an English barn. When the farmer put it up for sale, most people who viewed it walked away. It was dark and isolated and could only be reached by a half mile farm track with a steep 1:8 gradient.... (more) But furniture designer Robert Ellis (58) had had his eye on it for some time. For years he’d been jogging past the barn and always thought one day he’d like to live there. Against all advice, Rob and his wife Jane, (58) a textile designer, went ahead and bought the barn for £210,000 and proposed to convert at £250,000.