There was a time when the only way the owner of a fine country house in the north of England would consider leaving his home was feet first. But the simultaneous sale of a number of major country houses in Yorkshire and Lancashire suggests that the southern trend of moving in, making over, and moving on may be catching on up north.

Four years ago, when the owners of Kilvington Hall at Thirsk, North Yorkshire, bought the fine late Georgian house with its 37 acres of gardens, grounds and parkland at the foot of the Hambleton Hills, their intention was to live there permanently.

Now having completely renovated the house, restored the gardens, and refurbished the former gardener?s and gamekeeper?s cottages, ?a new opportunity has presented itself?, selling agent James Gloag of Strutt & Parker (01423 561274) reveals, and a pristine Kilvington Hall is back on the market at a guide price of £2.75 million. The cottages are being sold separately, at ?offers in excess of £425,000? each.

The vendors have clearly cut no corners in upgrading Kilvington to 21st century standards of country living: it now has four elegant reception rooms, a kitchen/breakfast room, eight bedrooms and four bathrooms, plus a stable yard with five loose boxes, garaging and a stable flat. Most importantly, given today?s increasingly mobile market, Kilvington Hall is impeccably situated 24 miles from York, 25 miles from Harrogate, and 36 miles from the thriving financial centre of Leeds.

This article was originally published in Country Life magazine, October 6, 2005. To subscribe click here.