The Grange Barn

In May 1965 Charles and Rosie Rowe moved into The Grange, Little Thurlow. They rented the Grange from the trustees of the Frink estate, then took the opportunity to buy it in 1985. For the past two and half years they have lived at The Grange Barn. Their daughters Lucy, Jane and Edwina (usually known as Bear) were born and brought up here, and Lucy and her husband Lewis now live in The Grange.

Rosie is a housewife and very keen gardener and Charles is Chief Executive Officer for the Sultan of Oman’s interests in this country and worldwide. Charles’ recreation is playing golf when he can find the time and Rosie’s is gardening.

“Thurlow is a beautiful unspoilt village with much character.” Gratitude for this is due to the Vestey family, particularly Edmund and Anne, for keeping Little Thurlow unspoilt, without new housing or a mass of housing estates.

When the Rowes first came to the village in 1965 Florence Vestey was still alive. She was a tremendous character, who spent a lot of time visiting people up and down the village street, contributing much to the cohesion of the two villages. Sir John and Lady Mowbray (Mr. Ronald Vestey’s agent) played a large part in the life and history of the village. In fact they and the Frink family helped the Vestey family to settle into the village when they first moved here in 1943. Sir John was a great confidant of Ronald Vestey. The role they played is now continued by Edmund and Anne Vestey and Robert and Elizabeth Clifton-Brown and their children, all of whom have moved into houses in Great and Little Thurlow and Little Bradley.

Charles says that much of the history of the village has gone with the death of many old faces and friends. He particularly mentioned Charlie Fountain, who after working for the estate as a tractor driver worked for them in their garden for twenty five years. He was a tremendous character, always known to the family as “my boy”.

There have been numerous parsons during the Rowe’s thirty four years in Thurlow. “Barry” Barnes was here when they first arrived having been parson for many years. He was a great character. He was followed by Canon Childs, also a great character, who became Archdeacon of Sudbury. During their time Charles was church warden of St. Peters Little Thurlow, and all their daughters were married from St. Peters.