Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Country mansion, nr Kirby Stephen, Cumbria

I've been having a mare of a month - topped by hubby spending last week in hospital with pneumonia. Anyway, things are crawling back to normal so I thought I'd treat myself today.
The fire's lit, I have chocolate, and I have this extraordinary property to show you - sent to me by Wreck reader India.
It's pretty remote - at North Stainmore, a huddle of homes off the A66, on the border between Cumbria, North Yorkshire and County Durham, around seven miles from Kirby Stephen. It's in the district of Eden, with its wild and lovely countryside and fab walks.
Having spent a couple of hours doing  a bit of online detective work, what I find weirdest about the property is the lack of information*.
There's very little on the agent's site and it's not on the listed buildings register (which may explain the ugly additions). I can't find any record of it's former use in the local press (it has a patina of ex-care home); and the stripped-out fireplaces suggest someone trying to make some fast cash.

It has seven bedrooms, couple of bathrooms, three reception rooms, sitting room and kitchen. Plus the second floor tower room with cast iron fireplace (too heavy to remove...?).
Outside are decent gardens, a small paddock, two big stone barns and several smaller stone buildings.
The decor is, well, eccentric but the views from the back of the house are fabulous (Google isn't helpful on what else is nearby)

It's on the market through PFK with a guide price of £389,950 - a reduction of £110k since it went on the market in July. More details and pix here.

*I think the property is/was Borrenthwaite (or Barrenthwaite) Hall - pic source here. If it is, Google brings up some rather more interesting stuff about one of its previous owners.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Investment properties for artistic types

A friend of mine is married to an artist who paints big, gorgeous and unsettling pictures. He needs space for that. 
Anyhow, long-standing 'Wreck..' readers may remember they've been trying to find a former factory or similar for the family to live in and him to work in.
It made me think again about people who aren't looking for my usual sort of wreck. So, today, I'm looking at former commercial properties for artists looking for an investment as well as a studio.
My first two were both sent to me by 'Wreck' reader Kit (thanks again, Kit).
Above and below is an extraordinary, unrenovated ex-antiques showroom and former mill/factory on Station Road, in Batley.

It comes with planning permission to turn it into nine, two-bedroom flats, but you could just as easily pick a floor for yourself and develop the rest as finished flats, or sell-off floors as DIY spaces.
It's Grade II-listed; there are four floors and right of way to the side and rear giving potential outside space. It's on the market at £275k, through Dales & Shires - Zoopla details here and agent's pdf here
The property below is a group of brick-built workshops, plus a house, built around a courtyard.
It's in Renishaw, an old Derbyshire village with an honourable mining past and easy access to the M1.

Doesn't look much from the front (above), but that gated courtyard layout and the mix of house and workshops - plus the shop you can see to the right - offer lots of options.

If you needed more - it comes with planing permission (2011) to turn it into three homes.
It's on the market via Barry Findley and Rightmove, at best offers above £125k. Details here.
Next, two similar properties in Longton, Stoke-on-Trent.
A former pottery with two floors of warehouse and office space, secure yard and lots of space:

On the market at £195k through Butters John Bee. Rightmove link here and agents link here.
And a pretty tatty looking (but amazing shape!) ex-workshop and former Catholic School with tall, open-plan workshop area, plus further workshops and large, secure yard:

On the market at £85k through Rory Mack - details here.
Finally, if all that looks too much like hard work. The property below doesn't fit the 'wreck' idea at all but it was too pretty to ignore.

It's a five-bedroom Victorian detached property in the Staffordshire Moorlands town of Leek. The house part of it is gorgeous in itself, but at the front are two self-contained shop units - the bay windows you can see in the picture. Currently used as lighting and artists gallery:

The garden includes a brick structure (above) with potential for use as a studio and there are lots of original features throughout the building:

It's on the market through Bury and Hilton at £255k. Zoopla pictures here, plans and agent's details here.

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Cottage, Cornwood, nr Ivybridge


Couldn't quite make my mind up about this one. But then I thought, not everyone sees a cottage facing a pine wood and thinks 'Dog Soldiers'.
Ford Cottage is detached, three-bedroomed and in a good location in the Devonshire village of Cornwood, around 12 miles from Plymouth.
It has a good-sized garden with decent views, and a striking stone porch at the front. 
The outside is a bit ugly, to be fair, and that render could be to blame for those damp walls in the kitchen: 



There are some nice original features but nothing that you really should save.
Blimey - I'm not doing a great job of "selling" this one am I? Ok. The reality is that it's a decent do-upper house that ticks my boxes - detached, good location, bit of land.


It's up for sale through Michelmore Hughes by informal tender, deadline December 6th, 12 noon. There's a guide price of £155k. More details here and Zoopla version here.
Here are those trees...