Country houses for sale

Live in the grand home that became Hogwarts in three of the Harry Potter films

Wingardium renovatio! Eagle-eyed Harry Potter fans may recognise the 100-acre Royal Connaught Park from several of the early movies.

Digs at the former Royal Masonic School for Boys at Bushey, on the outskirts of Harrow, have surely improved since noisy pupils were careering around and even since the striking neo-Gothic building was regularly used as a film set, from Nuns on the Run and Lucky Jim to Monty Python’s Flying Circus and three ‘Harry Potter’ films.

Dilapidated at the turn of this century, the building and its 100-acre site have been sensitively transformed by Comer Homes, which has even established a stonemason’s workshop on site, using Bath stone to repair the hand-carved staircase, Gothic window arches, fireplaces and so on.

Designed by Scottish architects Gordon & Gunton, the sprawling building was created for the Royal Masonic school for Boys to move into from their former residence in Wood Green.

In 1903, the foundation stone was laid by Prince Arthur, the Duke of Connaught — third son of Queen Victoria — and by 1939, there were over 800 pupils in attendance. However, by the late 1970’s, after a few years of low attendance, the school closed and assumed the new role as the home of the Unites States International University.

The dining hall in the former Royal Masonic School for Boys

Throughout the 80’s and 90’s, the now named Royal Connaught Park was used in several noteworthy TV and film productions — and, according to local reports — as the Great Hall in the first few Harry Potter films.

Renamed Royal Connaught Park, it now contains 300 residences — ‘the epitome of contemporary luxury in perfect harmony with Victorian splendour’ — starting at £610,000 for a two-bedroom apartment.

Bushey: What you need to know

Location: Bushey is located between Watford and Stanmore, and is just a 25 minute train journey into Central London from Bushey Mainline station. The Jubilee Line also runs from Stanmore to the West End.

Atmosphere: The highly-sought after location has excellent shopping and leisure facilities in Bushey Heath and Bushey Village.

Things to do: Enjoy the residents leisure facilities, including a gym pool tennis club and 100 acres of parkland. Watford’s Atria shopping centre is closeby, offering extensive restaurants, a bowling alley and cinema and Central London easily reached for theatres, museums and nightlife.

Schools: St Margaret’s Girls School, Bushey Heath Primary School and Sacred Heart Catholic School are all well-regarded in the area.

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