For some reason my brain always associates country living with large farmhouse style homes filled with luscious old wood – furniture, panelling, trees in the garden . . . . . Having been brought up in a very english village, I used to walk past some fabulous houses and cottages just on the route out of our small modern development up to the main road. As a result, although I could never afford to live in a similar property, it gave me a love for visiting them by way of heritage houses that offer old furniture and furnishings. The smell of the wood and the knowledge that even if not originally bought or made for that property, they will be of a contemporary age and well worth admiring. Wooden furnirure needs special care to ensure its longevity. The commercially available oil is not always needed and can sometimes do more harm than good on a real antique. You need to know the original finish of the piece. Sometimes dust and dirt stock to oiled furniture and this causes more damage in a short time than centuries of careful neglect ever did.