An unusual gatehouse home that guards the entrance to an estate once owned by the original Dick Whittington is for sale.
Eponymous pantomime character Dick Whittington takes much inspiration from Richard Whittington, the Lord Mayor of London in the 14th century and one-time owner of 250-acre Lypiatt Park after he supposedly took it as payment for a debt.
According to the folk story, Whittington almost gave up on London life in favour of Gloucestershire but was persuaded by the Bow Bells and the lucrative sale of his cat to stay on and make his fortune.
A buyer ready to swap the ‘gold-paved’ streets of London for the sleepy Cotswolds could become the master of a three-story tower with a roof terrace and half an acre of land.
Royal architect Sir Jeffry Wyatville who designed the home is best known for his vast remodelling of Windsor Castle for King George IV and his extensions to Chatsworth House in Derbyshire.
The unique home dates back to 1820 and has been in the same family since 1954. Current owner Ashley Dickenson, who inherited the property with his three siblings, says the lodge with its large garden was a “great place to grow up” and the castellated roof terrace is the home’s “pièce de résistance”.
“The views are panoramic. You can see the Marlborough Downs in one direction, the River Severn in the other and on a clear day you can even see the Welsh hills,” says Dickenson.
Neighbouring Lypiatt Park was left in disrepair after the war until it was bought by famous sculptor Lynn Chadwick in 1958 for around £7,000 which was, the artist once said, “the same price as a three-bedroom house.”
The Barnes-born sculptor gradually renovated the sprawling estate, including an 11-bedroom main house, and set up a studio complete with blacksmith’s anvil in the medieval chapel. His son, artist and designer Daniel Chadwick, inherited the estate in 2003.
Local legend also claims Guy Fawkes’ gunpowder plot was planned in one of the many rooms cementing the estate’s place in England’s tumultuous history.
The lodge is three miles from the picturesque market town of Stroud which has direct, sub 90-minute train journeys to London Paddington, making it a viable option for occasional London commuters.