Country houses for sale

Eight of the biggest country house sales in Britain in 2020

Penny Churchill picks out some of the greatest country house sales to take place in the last 12 months, after an extraordinary year of up-and-down activity.

Denham Mount, Denham, Buckinghamshire

  • Launched May 2019; sold October 2020
  • Guide price £5.85m
  • Selling agent Strutt & Parker

Denham Mount

A rare ‘mini-estate’, comprising an elegant Georgian villa with a Victorian extension, a lake, four cottages and a coach house, set in 40 acres within the M25, Denham Mount caused quite a stir when it launched in May 2019, thanks to the role played by its veranda in the 1945 film adaptation of Noël Coward’s Blithe Spirit. However, it was post-lockdown demand that led to a sale in October 2020.

Dewlish House, near Milborne St Andrew, Dorset

  • Launched September 2019; sold October 2020
  • Guide price £12m
  • Selling agent Knight Frank

Dewlish House

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Built in the Queen Anne style in about 1702, lovely, Grade I-listed Dewlish House, with its surrounding 296-acre estate in the heart of Hardy country, sent a frisson of excitement through a lacklustre market in September 2019, when it came up for sale for the first time in 57 years. Having gone under offer more than once, the estate was sold a year later to an American buyer based in the UK.

The Manor House, Glanvilles Wootton, near Sherborne, Dorset

  • Launched March 2020; sold July 2020
  • Guide price £4.75m
  • Selling agent Strutt & Parker

The Manor House, Glanvilles Wootton

Set in 88 acres of lush parkland, pasture, gardens and woodland in a quiet, edge-of-village location, the exquisitely symmetrical, seven-bedroom Georgian manor house, which incorporates an earlier 17th-century house, was in excellent order when it came to the market at the start of the first national lockdown. A sale was of The Manor House swiftly agreed with an international family whose only viewing was via a virtual tour.

Ampney Park, Ampney Crucis, Gloucestershire

  • Launched May 2019; completed October 2020
  • Guide price £8.5m
  • Selling agent Savills

Ampney Park

One of the grand traditional Cotswold country houses, set in 25½ acres of wonderful terraced gardens, woods and parkland, Grade II-listed Ampney Park is equally well suited to entertaining on a grand scale and more intimate family living in peaceful seclusion. It sold to a European buyer looking to settle permanently in the UK, for whom houses in London and the country represented the ideal scenario.

Meonstoke House, Meonstoke, Hampshire

  • Launched June 2020; sold August 2020
  • Guide price £9m
  • Selling agent Knight Frank

Meonstoke House

A beautifully renovated, classic Georgian country house, Meonstoke House (also pictured top), listed Grade II, stands in 34 acres of immaculate gardens and paddocks on the banks of the River Meon in the South Downs National Park. Launched following the lifting of lockdown in June, the house was bought by a British buyer returning from the Middle East, who had spent four years in pursuit of his country-house dream.

The Old Rectory, Nuneham Courtenay, Oxfordshire

  • Launched July 2020; sold July 2020
  • Guide price £6.5m
  • Joint selling agents Knight Frank and Savills

The Old Rectory, Nuneham

Set in five acres of grounds within the 350-acre Nuneham Park estate, five miles from Oxford, The Old Rectory was built in the 1760s by the 1st Earl Harcourt, who had the old village of Nuneham Courtenay demolished to make way for a Classical landscape designed by Capability Brown. The Old Rectory was snapped up by an English buyer moving from the Cotswolds to be nearer the Oxford schools.

Alderbury House, near Salisbury, Wiltshire

  • Launched July 2020; sold November 2020
  • Guide price ‘excess £5m’
  • Selling agent Savills

Alderbury House.

One of Wiltshire’s most elegant Georgian country houses, Alderbury House, listed Grade II*, stands in 33 acres of gardens and parkland three miles from Salisbury. Reputedly the work of Benjamin Latrobe who designed The White House in Washington DC, it was built with stone from Salisbury Cathedral. The buyer was a US-based British family who had only seen the house via Zoom or through relatives.

Cholderton House, Cholderton, near Salisbury, Wiltshire

  • Launched October 2019; sold April 2020
  • Guide price £4m
  • Selling agent Strutt & Parker

Cholderton House

Meticulously rebuilt after a devastating fire, Grade II*-listed Cholderton House is effectively a fine 21st-century house behind a restored, late-17th-century William-and-Mary façade. Set in 23 acres, it boasts Olympic-level equestrian facilities, including indoor and outdoor schools. It was bought by a European family who had been renting in Cholderton, having decided Wiltshire was where they wanted to be.

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