Architect Piers Taylor had always wanted to live off the beaten track. For many years he thought he would end up taking his family from England to Australia—where he once lived and studied—to find a perfect home in the bush, away from everything. But when he came across Moonshine, a former gamekeeper’s cottage tucked away in the woods, four miles outside the city of Bath, he knew a continental shift wouldn’t be necessary. With no direct access from the road, the original stone house with a castellated rooftopis reached via a ten-minute walk along a path through the forest and is graced with sweeping views across the green valley spread out below. "I first went to see the place holding our daughter Lily in a shopping basket when she was just days old," says Piers, who now has two children with his wife Sue, along with his first daughter Imogen. "I got more and more excited as I walked down the path to the house, and when I opened the gate and saw the setting and the views, I knew I wanted to live there immediately. I was affected by it like no other place I have ever been to. Within five minutes I had offered near to the asking price."
Whilst traipsing through the woods in search of Piers Taylor's 18th-century gamekeeper's cottage, writer and frequent Dwell contributor Dominic Bradbury found himself wishing that he had packed breadcrumbs in addition to the de rigueur tools of reportage. "I remember being very struck by the journey, and wondering whether I was taking the right path. It's all rather Hansel and Gretel, but suddenly, through the trees, you're rewarded with this rather brave, new, and contemporary house."