The times they are a changing at Aultmore House: legendary rock star Bob Dylan has owned this spectacular Scottish mansion for nearly two decades, but he's now selling up. Penny Churchill takes a look.
When talking about A-listers in Scottish property, it’s generally a reference to the listed building system north of the border, which uses letters instead of the Roman numerals of the English system.
This time, though, it refers both to that and to a very different A-lister: the iconic rock star Bob Dylan, who is selling Aultmore House, the Highland retreat he’s owned for almost 20 years. Tom Stewart-Moore of Knight Frank in Edinburgh is handling the sale and seeks ‘offers over £3m’ for Category A-listed home.
The house sits in 24 acres of formal and walled gardens — which include a greenhouse they’d be proud of at Kew — as well as paddocks and woodland at Nethy Bridge in the heart of the Cairngorms, six miles from Grantown on Spey, 13 miles from Aviemore and 35 miles from Inverness.
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Approached along a private, tree-lined drive, Aultmore House offers more than 18,000sq ft of elegant accommodation on three floors, including four grand reception rooms, 16 bedrooms and 11 bathrooms.
The property features many elements and designs introduced by the original owner, including Adam-style fireplaces in the reception rooms, exquisite plasterwork on ceilings and archways and timber floors and facings throughout.
The wiring, heating and hot-water systems were upgraded in 2007–08, and, more recently, smoke alarms and emergency lighting have been installed.
Aultmore was bought by the legendary singer-songwriter Bob Dylan and his brother, David, in 2006, before a further refurbishment of the house and its three cottages, which have been let over the years as a wedding and holiday venue.
Aultmore House was commissioned by Aberdonian industrialist Archibald Merrilees as the family’s summer residence and built between 1911 and 1915 to the designs of the eminent Edwardian architect C. H. B Quennell. Sadly, Merrilees died in 1917, having spent only one summer at Aultmore.
Sold after the war in 1922, the house was extended by the Nivinson family with the addition of a nursery wing on the north side. Aultmore remained in Nivinson family ownership until 1978, having served as a convalescent home during the Second World War.
It was later a finishing school for foreign students and an upmarket B&B, but gradually fell into disrepair before being sold in November 2000 and subsequently restored before Dylan bought it in 2006.
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