Ashcombe in Wiltshire. Cecil Beaton recalled his first impressions of the house, which was to become his home for fifteen years: "None of us uttered a word as we came under the vaulted ceiling and stood before a small, compact house of lilac-coloured brick. We inhaled sensuously the strange, haunting - and rather haunted - atmosphere of the place ... I was almost numbed by my first encounter with the house. It was as if I had been touched on the head by some magic wand."