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.

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.