Country houses for sale

A breathtaking 14th-century farmstead has come to the market in an idyllic spot in Norfolk

Two years of work went in to restoring Spring Farm near Dereham, with the stylish and characterful results a tribute to the owners.

Tranquillity and calm come with the keys to Spring Farm at Gressenhall in rural north Norfolk, a meticulously restored 14th-century farmhouse with two barn conversions set in 13 acres of rolling lawns, wildflower meadows and historic spring-fed ponds, five miles from Dereham and 20 miles from the coast at Wells-next-the-Sea. Tim Hayward of Jackson-Stops in trendy Burnham Market quotes a guide price of £2.15m for the idyllic farmstead, which takes its name from the holy Well of St Agnes that sits on its land and was once a staging point for pilgrims on their way to the Marian shrine at Walsingham.

Vendors Gary and Judith Harris had been living and working in Dubai when, in the mid 2000s, they decided to retire to the UK. They bought Spring Farm in September 2015 and, after almost two years of restoration and renovation, they spent their first night in the farmhouse on September 20, 2017.

The restoration of the two 15th-century barns was completed in December 2019. Mrs Harris recalls the process: ‘Spring Farm, which is unlisted, was a forgotten gem. However, by engaging a genealogist and architectural historian, we discovered that the farmhouse had probably been a religious hall house and one of some stature, judging from the ornately carved oak beams and other many ritual protection markings. Although once a cherished family home, the farm needed resuscitation.

Recommended videos for you

The farmhouse had no central heating and only one working fireplace, and the two 15th-century barns were about to collapse. Now, thanks to innovative roofing insulation and a modern ground-source heat pump, combined with triple glazing and underfloor heating, this once-cold collection of buildings offers warmth and comfort throughout.

The farmstead, which is supplied by an abundance of fresh spring water, stands in a private and peaceful location with no overhead wires or pylons.

The main farmhouse offers 2,284sq ft of well-organised living space, including three reception rooms, a kitchen/breakfast room and a utility room on the ground floor, with the entire first floor taken up by the principal bedroom suite.

The 15th-century barns provide excellent entertaining space and four guest bedrooms with bathrooms en suite.

Spring Farm is for sale via Jackson-Stops at £2.15m — see more details and pictures.


Best country houses for sale this week

A pair of miniature castles and a wonderful coastal home in the West Country make it in to our look