Mary Duff with her husband Geoffrey purchased The King’s Head in 1972 following a whirlwind decision one morning when walking her three boys to school. For sale at £2,500 Mary and Geoffrey made an offer and had it accepted all in one day, and then didn’t sleep that night wondering what they had done! But it turned into a well loved family home for the family of five with some amazing fond memories that they have loved sharing with us.
The Duff family have been hugely involved throughout the project with Heritage Lincolnshire, sending us home footage, photographs and talking about their time at the house which really show how much love and laughter they shared within these four walls.
Mary and two of her sons, visited us in September 2019 on one of the Heritage Open Days Hard Hat Tours, and managed to even solved a few mysteries for us. They even met some relations of the Lavender family who lived there at the property before them!
We invited Mary along recently to talk to us about her memories of The Old King’s Head and what she thinks of it now following its transformation and new life;
What do you remember most about living at The King’s Head as a family?
To us it was just a family house, a big family house at that with steeps of history
It always had a life of its own and was an integral part of our family.
Martin, Richard and Philip grew up in the Kings Head, from jelly and ice cream parties, girlfriends, learning to drive in the courtyard, to leaving for university and engagement parties
We had Chickens, ducks and 2 sheep in the paddock behind the barns, so at times it seemed like a small farm in the centre of the village
I (Mary) was Akela in the local cub scout group and many a time the group would meet at the house for sheep shearing or badge work.
There are so many memories that its hard to pick out just a few.
Why was it such a great family home?
We loved the space the house had for the family to grow up in and the doors were always open for visitors.
The house was always seemed to be a central point for friends and family to gather and meet up
We had amazing parties there for birthdays, Christmas and New Year’s Eve.
It was the perfect house for Christmas, a roaring fire in the lounge and dining room and plenty of space for all the generations of our family to be together
It was a very sad day when we had to say goodbye to it, but the house had become too big for just the two of us once the boys had left.
What do you think of the restoration works that have been completed by Heritage Lincolnshire?
Absolutely fantastic! – you have saved this amazing house from falling down after being in disrepair since we left there
It means that our memories there will carry on for many more years and create new ones for others
It has been a joy to see new life breathed into the house and to have been allowed to follow and be part of this journey
The house is a big part of our history even though this is only a small part of the history of the house.
Mary was invited back in September 2021 to come and see her old bedroom which is now named after her family name. Herself and her three sons will be joining us on Friday 1st October 2021 when we open up The Old King’s Head tea room and will be the first ones to be served a good cup of tea!