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Nine-bedroom stately home in Cumbria for sale for price of London flat — with a maze but no roof or windows

·3-min read
 (Rightmove)
(Rightmove)

For £450,000 you could buy a two bedroom flat in Zone 2 or 3. Alternatively, if you are prepared to relocate 300 miles north west, you could become the master or mistress of Kirklinton Hall, a spectacular stately home in the village of Kirklinton, near Carlisle, Cumbria.

There is, however, a catch. Although the sprawling hall, which comes with almost 14 acres of land, certainly offers plenty of space it does lack a few mod cons.

Including a roof. And windows.

The Grade II-listed building has been derelict for decades and will need plenty of time and plenty of money to renovate it.

It is on the market with estate agent Galbraith for offers in excess of £450,000.

 (Rightmove)
(Rightmove)

Its current owner is Christopher Boyle QC, a former chairman of the Georgian Group.

He bought the hall in 2012. “I live up the road where we have a little estate and I wanted something for my second son to inherit,” explained Mr. Boyle.

“I also wanted to save it from redevelopment. Someone had got planning permission to put 11 flats in the main house and 11 houses on the grounds, and my fear was that with that precedent somebody else would come along and want to build 50 houses.”

The hall was built in 1660 in the fashionable Jacobean style and extended in 1875. Over its long lifetime it has been an impressive country house, a wartime base for the RAF, flats, a hotel, and most recently a nightclub and casino said to have been frequented by 1960s gangsters including the Kray twins.

 (Rightmove)
(Rightmove)

It was later seriously damaged by a fire and in 1972 its roof was removed to avoid rates.

In 2014 Mr Boyle, 52, got planning permission to restore the house into a nine-bedroom home.

His first tasks, however, were to renovate the gardens which now feature formal terraces, a water garden, walled garden, orchard, kitchen garden, and a paddock.

Work has also begun on converting some of the outbuildings: the stable block, a tower, a one bedroom annexe, and a barn which he used as an office during the pandemic.

 (Rightmove)
(Rightmove)

Sadly somebody else will now have to complete the project. Mr Boyle and his wife Ilona are getting divorced, and the property needs to be sold as part of the settlement.

“Do I have any regrets? Not at all,” he said. “The first thing is we have saved it, and we have had ten years of lots of fun.”

Sam Gibson, head of the residential agency for Galbraith in the north of England, said that in less than a week on sale he had conducted more than 20 viewings on the hall and received “a few offers”.

“It is proving quite popular,” he said. “It seems to be capturing the imagination of all sorts of different people from all different walks of life.”

Mr Gibson estimates that renovating the house would cost around £2m to £3m, but the work already carried out by Mr Boyle means that it would be possible to live in the annexe and simply enjoy the grounds and the evocative ruined house.

“It would be the ultimate bolt hole,” he said.

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