Country houses for sale

A Grade II*-listed hall house in North Yorkshire with Capability Brown gardens

Built for the daughter of a king, Rudby Hall in Skutterskelefe might be one of the most significant country houses in the county.

There are monarchs that will remain forever etched in the psyche of this nation, for one reason or another. William the Conqueror, so named after all his conquering. Henry VIII, for the wives. Charles I, for losing the monarchy and Charles II, for getting it back. George III, for his madness. Even Elizabeth II, for being around for a jolly long time.

Sometimes, however, you hear of a monarch for what feels like the first ever time. For example, William IV. Without looking it up, can you tell me anything about him? Anything at all? Well, I can give you one little factoid for free, which is that one of his daughters, Amelia, lived in Rudby Hall in North Yorkshire, which is for sale with Savills for £2.5 million. Every day a school day here at Country Life.

The newly appointed kitchen, one of several modern additions to this 19th-century home.

Completed in 1838 to a design by the architect Anthony Salvin, Rudby Hall is ‘one of the most significant country houses’ in the county, say the agents, and it also underwent a ‘ground up’ restoration in the 1980s, which saw improvements to the Westmorland slate roof and stone work, as well as upgrading of the heating, plumbing and electrics. 

The entrance hall is awash with period details.

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Approached via a sweeping driveway, the property offers some 13 bedrooms and bathrooms in total. You will, quite frankly, never see a house in your life with as many bathrooms as this one. Every time you go to the shops to buy bleach, you’ll no doubt be setting off an alarm at MI6. They say 13 is an unlucky number, and it certainly is for whoever has to clean all those loos.

One of the many, many, many bathrooms.

Set over four floors, it is on the ground floor where you will find the four reception rooms, which open up off the main reception hall. Despite the substantial renovations conducted by recent owners, the property retains many of its exceptional original features, especially in the ground floor reception rooms, such as ornamental fireplaces, plasterwork and cornices.

Gardens laid out by ‘Capability’ Brown, with views of the Cleveland Hills.

If all that wasn’t enough, the gardens and grounds extend to about seven acres, and are predominantly parkland and laid to lawn designed by Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown. On the west side of the house, a sheltered stone-paved terrace fronts the kitchen and, beyond, level terraced lawns are protected by the wall of the original kitchen garden, which is covered in climbing roses.

No fine country house is complete without a towering central staircase. Rudby Hall is no exception.

Set within the hamlet of Skutterskelefe (trying saying that after a gin and tonic), the property is less than a mile from the village of Hutton Rudby, which features all the amenities (pub, church, primary school, cricket club, taxidermist) you could wish for. 

Rudby Hall is for sale with Savills for £2.5 million. For more information and to see more pictures, click here

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