In the past 30 years, the best value Michelle and Bob Shemtob got from their garden was during the UK’s first lockdown last spring. “We sat in the garden virtually all the time. I remember feeling lockdown wasn’t so bad because we had the garden,” says Michelle.
It proved an important selling point when they put their house, a few streets outside St John’s Wood’s western boundary, on the market in May — a house that the couple bought two years after they married and raised three daughters in. There was a steady procession of viewers and, after two prospective buyers got in “a nice little bidding war”, the Shemtobs sold the home for £4.325m. In 1991, they had bought it for £375,000.