When the going gets tough, the country-house market in Yorkshire simply changes up a gear. Toby Cockcroft of Savills’ new Harrogate office (01423 535800) is celebrating the sale of Yorkshire’s most expensive country property the pristine, 950-acre Sawley Hall residential and sporting estate near Fountains Abbey in the Nidderdale AONB, six miles south-east of Ripon. Launched on the market in late April with a guide price of £10 million, the estate is now under offer after serious bidding from a number of mainly Yorkshire buyers.
Two miles west of the enchanting North Yorkshire cathedral city, Strutt & Parker (01423 561274) invite offers over £7m for the ‘ultimate’ country house, Grade II-listed Copt Hewick Hall, which sits in 86 acres of land near the village of Copt Hewick, on the edge of the Dales and the North York Moors. The current owners, who bought the house a little over three years ago, have completely transformed the elegant Regency mansion, adding two major extensions to the rear, as well as reroofing, rewiring and installing state-of-the-art plumbing and heating systems. Having completed their magnum opus, they now find it all just a little too big and are planning to downsize.
The interior of the hall, which has four reception rooms, a study, a children’s sitting room and playroom, a breakfast kitchen, eight double bedrooms and five bath/shower rooms, has been exquisitely decorated throughout. Outbuildings include a coach house and estate yard, a two-bedroom lodge and a two-bedroom garden cottage, and the grounds have everything a sporting teenager could wish for, including stabling, a swimming pool, a tennis court, a gymnasium and in-hand sporting rights over the land, which is currently let. In price terms, Leeds is still the main driver in the North Yorkshire market, says Tim Waring of Knight Frank in Harrogate, who is preparing to launch two very different Yorkshire ‘gems’ into this highly competitive arena: Crayke Castle and Long Marston Manor.
Charming Long Marston Manor at Long Marston, seven miles from both Wetherby and York, is a beautifully restored Queen Anne former parsonage, built in 1695 and sold off by the church in 1939, for which Knight Frank (01423 530088) quote a guide price of £2.75m to £3m. Having passed through a number of families since then, the manor was a nursing home from 1988 until 2002, when it was rescued by the current owners and meticulously restored to its former glory. The house, listed Grade II, stands in some 2.5 acres of splendidly wooded gardens and grounds, and has four main reception rooms, a garden room, a music room, a 46ft kitchen/breakfast room, master and guest suites, plus four further bedrooms, four bathrooms and extensive attic space.