This 154-acre fenced farm near Maulds Meaburn hasn't used fertiliser since 2008 and has ambitious plans for restoring the landscape.
THE medieval village of Maulds Meaburn in Cumbria dates from the 12th century, when King Henry II gave part of the lands of Meaburn to Sir Hugh de Morville and the other part to his sister, Maud de Veteripont. When Sir Hugh fell out of favour, the King reclaimed his land and that village was known thereafter as King’s Meaburn; the village once owned by Maud is still known as Maulds Meaburn. Said to be one of only three villages left in England where the green is still grazed by sheep, Maulds Meaburn sits either side of the Lyvennet Beck, which rises on nearby Crosby Ravensworth Moor, an area rich in ancient remains. From there, the beck flows northwards through Crosby Ravensworth, Maulds Meaburn and King’s Meaburn, emerging as the River Lyvennet, which joins the River Eden near the village of Temple Sowerby, eight miles east of Penrith.
Located to the north of Cumbria’s Howgill Fells, the remote pastoral landscape of the Westmorland Dales has been the north-west outpost of the Yorkshire Dales National Park since 2016. This scenic, but relatively little-known part of east Cumbria covers an area of 200 square kilometres (77 square miles) from Maulds Meaburn in the north to Tebay in the south-west and Ravenstonedale in the south-east. Tucked away between the Lake District and the Yorkshire Dales, it boasts no fewer than 79 Scheduled Monuments, 19 Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) and two National Nature Reserves.
Here, Sam Gibson of Galbraith’s Hexham office (01434 693693) is handling the once-in-a-lifetime sale of Crake Trees Manor Farm, a traditional Westmorland holding at Maulds Meaburn, which comes to the market with a guide price of £2.8 million for the whole, or in up to 11 lots. For the past 30 years or more, the 154-acre, ring-fenced mixed farm has been developed by owners Mike and Ruth Tuer along regenerative farming lines, with no fertiliser broadcast since 2008 and the use of sprays and chemicals kept to an absolute minimum.
Starting from scratch, the couple converted a 19th-century barn into an impressive five-bedroom family farmhouse, incorporating a mix of original features, locally sourced materials and elegant modern fittings. Crake Trees Manor stands in an idyllic location at the end of a long sweeping drive, surrounded by rolling fields and open countryside with glorious panoramic views over the Pennine Ridge.
Recommended videos for you
Over the years, it has been the nerve centre of a successful B&B, camping and wedding business, which currently generates an income of some £200,000 annually. Assets involved include the farmhouse, some excellent outbuildings, a detached bungalow, party barn, four glamping pods and a camping field with planning consent for 40 tents. Additional income of some £15,000 a year is derived from a Countryside Stewardship Higher Level Tier scheme, which runs until December 31, 2031.
Located in the grounds are the atmospheric ruins of Crake Trees Tower House, a Grade II-listed Scheduled Monument. Built in the 14th century and enlarged in the 16th or 17th centuries, it is said to have been a residence of the powerful Lancaster family. Windows of various dates, a stone newel stair and a number of fireplaces remain; the barrel vault to the tower’s ground floor also survives intact.
Mr and Mrs Tuer will also leave a remarkable environmental legacy in the Crake Trees wetland and river restoration project. Following a partnership forged in 2020 with the Eden Rivers Trust, it has seen the creation of nine wetland areas and 11 ponds, the planting of about 500 trees, the restoration of 600m (about a third of a mile) of the Micklebank Syke and Howe Beck (two important headwater tributaries of the Lyvennet), and the reconnection of the channel with the floodplain in key areas.
By devoting a large area to wetlands and ponds, Crake Trees Manor Farm will be able to store 20 million litres of water at times of high rainfall. In addition, the river restoration and the reconnection of the floodplain, combined with the tree planting, will slow the flow of water that isn’t being stored in the ponds, further reducing the downstream flood risk. ‘Projects such as these are at the core of what Eden Rivers Trust does, but they would not be possible without people like Mike and Ruth, who are willing to give areas of land to make space for water and wildlife for the benefit of everyone,’ explains an Eden Rivers spokesperson.
A spectacular Bedfordshire mansion, a charming Somerset manor house and a delightful Cotswolds home make it in to our latest
Listen to all the episodes of the Country Life Podcast.
Octavia Pollock checks into Rothay Manor in Ambleside, Cumbria.
With more than two acres of immaculate garden and grounds, five bedroom The Clock Tower in Old Hunstanton is packed