Country houses for sale

A £1.6m bargain? Epic high ceilings, vast windows and over 10,000sq ft at this majestic Somerset country house

Can £1.6m ever seem to be a bargain? Upcott Hall makes a very good case for just that. Penny Churchill takes a look.

The Taunton office of Humberts is handling the sale — for the first time in 30 years — of Grade II-listed Upcott Hall, with selling agent Caroline Ardley quoting a guide price of £1.6m.

It’s a classic Georgian country house set in just under 3½ acres of delightful gardens and grounds within the pleasant rural hamlet of Upcott, between Bishop’s Hull and Bradford on Tone on the western outskirts of Taunton. 

The house dates from about 1730 and belonged to a succession of gentry owners before being substantially altered in the middle of the 20th century. By that point Upcott Hall hall had been laid out as 10 flats.

That all changed, however, in the early 1990s, when it was bought by the Babington family, who reinstated it as a single, sumptuous country dwelling.

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The house today is huge at 10,370sq ft, yet retains the feel of a gracious family home with accommodation on three floors, including eight reception rooms, seven bedrooms and three bathrooms.

There is work to be done here, as the pictures show, but it generally appears to be surface rather than structure. And anyone with a romantic streak will see straight past such things to appreciate that there is a real elegance and grace; the rooms and the proportions — ceilings, windows and indeed the footprint of the rooms — are utterly wonderful. With the light pouring in through the windows, this is the sort of fantasy Georgian house so many of us have dreamed of.

The Babingtons also undertook a comprehensive re-landscaping of the gardens and grounds surrounding the manor, which is approached from a quiet country lane through a gated entrance. 

30 years on, however, the time has come for a fresh spot of upgrading and refurbishment. Yet it would seem to be more than worth the outlay for this home, since Upcott Hall seems keenly priced given the size and potential here.  And not only is it a fine home, it’s also supremely well placed both for access to London and to Somerset’s many excellent schools.

Upcott Hall is for sale at £1.6m — see more details and pictures.

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