Current Owners of Swafield Hall

Boris Konoshenko

Previously Editor in Chief and Managing Director of the highest readership daily newspaper in Moscow (Russia), Boris was born in St-Petersburg, where he completed two higher educations, the first – radio physics, the second – theatre director. During Perestroika, he entered the newly emerging independent media business. Since 2005, Boris worked for the world’s largest global newspaper group Metro International, where he initially ran Metro Saint Petersburg. In 2009, Boris launched Metro in Moscow, which he headed until 2014, when he moved to London.

Per Mikael Jensen, then CEO of Metro International, wrote:
“Boris Konoshenko was the head of the Metro newspapers in Russia (Moscow and St. Petersburg), and was and is an absolutely amazing character.  Firstly: dazzlingly good!! He raised the newspapers from a deficit for several years, to be among the most profitable. Talent, diligence, unique driving force and a strong look at other people’s possibilities were his key characteristics. And then: completely unconventional in terms of how to develop a business. Extremely creative, rewarding, infectious. At our annual global managerial conferences, ALL people were always looking forward to what feature Boris would come up with. The best sales events I’ve participated in have always been the Russian – sometimes an impressive musical that Boris and the employees themselves had created and performed. Other times, the wildest settings that only Boris could have come up with.  And especially his amazing ability to make employees and customers feel a part of something bigger. When we sent HQ people to Moscow to help with something, it often happened that he cancelled their hotel rooms. ‘Sleep at my place, it’s much better’. Four men in his bedroom, Boris slept himself in the kitchen and woke up with a song on his lips, strong coffee and a contagious mood from the second he awoke. I’ve had many unforgettable days and nights with him and his staff in Moscow and St.Petersburg”.

In 2014 Boris quit his job in the media business in Russia, which was becoming more and more controlled by the government.  Him and Timothy moved to England, and started looking for a restoration project. “When we visited Norfolk and saw Swafield Hall for the first time the house wasn’t in its best condition. We said “definitely not” but returned here once, returned again and again. The hall had been on the property market for a long time and nobody had lived there for 3 years. The roof was leaking, walls were cracked, windows, doors and wooden constructions were rotten. It was crying out for TLC. But it was a beautiful, outstanding house with more than 4 centuries of history, great interiors and gardens with huge potential. Finally, we decided to buy Swafield Hall, renovate it and restore it to its previous glory. We are happy to share our love and passion for this beautiful historic house with our guests”.

Boris enjoys theatre and classical music, handicrafts, restoration and decorating, he is an avid gardener. In 2023 Boris was elected as Chairman of Swafield and Bradfield Parish Council. As an organist, he plays at many local church services. Together with Timothy he organises classical music concerts in Trunch and Swafield (TRUNCH CONCERTS) and Community Cinema Nights.

Tim Payne

Former Vice-President of Marketing (Europe, Middle East & Africa) at Oracle Corp, the American multinational computer technology corporation.

Studied at University of London.

From 1994 to 1998 Tim lived & worked in San Francisco for Oracle Corp before he transferred back to London.

From 2009 to 2014 he transferred to Moscow.

In January 2014 Tim and Boris moved to London and in November 2014 to Norfolk, where they renovated Swafield Hall. The renovation started in May 2015 and the work on the Hall was completed in 2018.

Tim is Church Warden of St Botolph’s Church in Trunch and St Nicholas Church in Swafield. He is also Chairman of Swafield Village Hall, a local councillor and co-organiser of Trunch and Swafield Community Cinema Nights and TRUNCH CONCERTS.

Tim enjoys interior design, antiques and classical cinematography, and also playing with his soft-coated wheaten terriers Anton and Anya.