Country houses for sale

A former monastery up for sale, with eight acres and breathtaking views

The aptly named Monastery once welcomed residents such as Eric Gill, Edgar Holloway and David Jones. Now it's a characterful family home with 8 acres of sublime countryside.

Today in unusual homes for sale in the British Countryside, allow us to present The Monastery near Capel y Ffin in Wales. As you might already be suspecting, The Monastery was indeed a monastery at one time; it is now, however, a home with 14 bedrooms.

For sale with Fine and Country for the sum of £1.5 million, The Monastery is a ‘unique and historic property’ that was originally built by Father Ignatius (real name: Joseph Leycester Lyne) in about 1870. Now listed Grade II, the property was designed by the architect Charles Buckeridge and, as well as many bedrooms, offers some ridiculous views. Just have a look at this.

Just look at that!

Conversions of religious buildings always pique a certain interest here at the Country Life Property Desk (CLPD). The often unusual layouts of places of worship present interesting challenges when they are turned into houses, and The Monastery is no different.

Views like this would make anybody believe in the existence of a benign higher power.

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Have you, for example, ever wished to live in a building that is almost a perfect square set around a central courtyard? Where, on the ground floor, there are no corridors, so in order to get from one side to the other you must walk through every single room between where you are and where you want to go? Well we have good news.

Long corridors, with plenty of wood panelling.

The other nice thing about these buildings is the excess of period features that they often include. More than just the typical exposed beams and vaulted ceilings are on display here. Observe the kitchen, if you will, with its beautiful stone chimney above the Aga. The inscription reads Laborare Est Orare, which, in English, means ‘To work is to pray’, a sentiment that will no doubt come in handy if you ever have to cook with upwards of 10 guests staying over. 

The main kitchen. Not pictured: Aga with foreboding latin above.

Other highlights include the mullioned windows, the beautiful gothic entrances, wooden panelling throughout and the high ceilings. There is plenty of space here, which is always good and, indeed, inspirational. Artists who have once lived here include Eric Gill, Edgar Holloway and David Jones. 

The entrance hall with classic church entrance. Because why not.

The gardens and grounds, as mentioned, are some of the finest spots in this part of Wales, with searing views of the surrounding valleys and countryside. Extending to some 8 acres, they also include the ruins of the original church, which is maintained by the Father Ignatius Memorial Trust. If that wasn’t enough, within the grounds is an area of woodland with its own stream. The nearby village of Llanthony provides a pub and a restaurant, while Hay-on-Wye is 8 miles to the north. 

The Monastery is for sale with Fine & Country for £1.5 million. For more information and pictures, click here

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