Country houses for sale

A timeless Grade II-listed refectory in one of Dorset’s ancient villages, surrounded by three acres of park-like gardens

Once part of a large estate, The Old Rectory in Nether Compton was built in the early 1820s, with Victorian additions added in the later part of the century and a garden room installed by the current owners during their tenure of over thirty years.

The area of north-west Dorset between Sherborne and the county boundary with Somerset is a timeless, wooded landscape of ancient villages linked by narrow, winding lanes enclosed by high grassy banks or walls of local stone.

Here, Knight Frank and Symonds & Sampson are joint agents in the sale of imposing The Old Rectory in the village of Nether Compton, west Dorset – three miles west of Sherborne and three miles east of Yeovil, Somerset – at a guide price of £2.25m.

Historically, Nether Compton and its neighbour, Over Compton, were part of a large estate owned, from 1736 until 2003, by the Goodden family, whose seat was Compton House at Over Compton.

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In 1883, Col John Goodden inherited the estate and, throughout the 1880s and 1890s, carried out a number of improvements in Nether Compton, restoring and extending the church and adding new buildings, many of which were designed by the architect Evelyn Hellicar.

Distinguished 20th-century residents include the test pilot, aviation historian and naval architect Harald Penrose, who lived at Nether Compton for 50 years in a house that he designed himself. Actresses Kristin and Serena Scott Thomas also spent their childhoods in the village.

Built of the warm local Ham stone under a slate roof, The Old Rectory, listed Grade II, dates from about 1820, with a substantial Victorian extension added in 1860/1870 and a garden room created by the current owners during their 35-year tenure. The house stands in more than three acres of wooded, park-like gardens, well stocked with shrub beds and borders.

It offers 6,135sq ft of light and airy living space, including reception and inner halls, three fine reception rooms, a well-designed kitchen/breakfast room, a garden room, master and guest bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms, three further bedrooms and a family bathroom, plus extensive cellars.

The vendors hold an assignable lease on surrounding glebe land of some 10.8 acres; this expires in 2022, but could be extended by agreement with the Diocese of Salisbury. There is also planning and listed-building consent to convert the stables to additional annexe accommodation.

The Old Rectory in Nether Compton is on the market through Knight Frank and Symonds & Sampson at a guide price of £2.25million. Click here for more information and pictures.