Father Darren Collins couldn’t imagine buying his large, part-Elizabethan and part-Victorian house in Hatfield.

He explains that it was actually three cottages which were combined into one during the 17th century. The Victorians then added a little for the servants’ quarters.

According to the priest, most clergy would struggle to pay for a place like this. So I’m thinking: “For over 400 years people have lived here and I feel blessed.”

Royal pedigree: Richard Devey lives and works at Gordonstoun, Prince Charles's old school

The Royal Pedigree: Richard Devey is a Prince Charles’s former school and lives at Gordonstoun.

As part of Father Collins’s role as Rector of St Etheldreda’s Church, the Church of England offers five bedrooms. This is the accommodation provided by the job.

Father Collins has been living in the rectory beside the church for five-years with Lorraine Collins, his wife and two of their children. 

He considers himself fortunate, but there are certain downsides to this venerable asset.

It is cold. The curtains are single-glazed, and the listing doesn’t allow you to change them. It’s enough to just sit back and let the curtains flow with the winds.

He then lights the three fireplaces and switches on all of the radiators.

He believes that the knock at the door does not have to do with his clerical duties, but rather with modern ones.

‘Before I was ordained, I was a plumber; so when I started, when people asked me to come to their house I thought I was going as a priest — but they actually just wanted me to fix their tap.’

According to Paul Handley, editor of the Church Times, tied accommodation is important for the Anglican church’s survival: ‘The Church of England is desperate to save or raise cash, and accommodation being part of the package is important in attracting clergy — especially in the expensive south-east.’

Tie homes are often located in rural areas because they tend to be in older industries and concerns that have been in existence for many centuries.

A country pub is an example. Jayne Barton manages the Crossroads Inn with Peter Conlin her partner and the three of them. 

For ten years, they have been living in a 3-bedroom apartment located above the pub. The best thing about it is that she doesn’t need to commute.

Jayne tells Jayne, “I can simply go down stairs and be at work. There’s no need for me to travel.” ‘And it’s an attractive building — typical Yorkshire stone with beautiful views.’

It’s always a great time when music and TV stars appear.

‘We have a lot of filming here — shows like Gentleman Jack and Last Tango In Halifax,’ says Jayne. 

“We also had Nick Lowe with us because he was in Halifax performing. He was beautiful.

They were they allowed to perform at the pub? “No. I would.

The shop is your home, so you are never away from work. “When we take a week off, we need to leave. But if you stay, it’s not too late. Before you know, there’s been a lot of trouble and you are involved.

Nikkie Thatcher (news editor at the Morning Advertiser), a newspaper that covers the pub trade agrees with Nikkie Thatcher: “Providing accommodation is a perk. Operators may find that they are unable to’switch off’, despite the benefits it offers such as being able to address any issue.

Sometimes the job that you hold is not your main one. Richard Devey, head of Senior School in Gordonstoun is perhaps most well-known as the alma mater for Prince Charles.

Richard, in addition to teaching geography and PE, is also a school firefighter. He says that he has been involved in more than 200 calls for cat rescues from roofs and flooding over his 30 year tenure.

The principal lives in a 3-bedroom apartment with Joanne and he. He said, “I absolutely love being on-site.” The pulse and rhythms of school are very real to me. 

A past life on the market 

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