The work of a lifetime
Wanted: brave new owners with patience and imagination
ever one to beat about the bush, Jock Lloyd Jones of Jackson-stops & Staff in Newmarket says it will take someone ‘brave and rich’ to restore imposing, Grade Ii-listed Poslingford House, near Clare on the essex-suffolk border, to its pristine glory.
The guide price of ‘offers over £1 million’ quoted by Jackson-stops (01638 662231) reflects the substantial additional funds needed—‘anything from £750,000 to £1.5m’—to completely renovate the elegant lategeorgian mansion, which stands in a magical, 36-acre parkland setting, and comes to the market for the first time in almost 70 years. Once restored, the property could be worth about £3m, Mr Lloyd Jones believes.
Poslingford House was built by Col Thomas Weston, in about 1820, on the site of an earlier manor house owned for centuries by the Golding family, which he demolished. Poslingford’s Historic england listing describes the new house as ‘a good example of an early-19th-century house with a sophisticated neo-classical design… comprising a main range with a Greek Doric portico, a flanking north wing and a small service wing’.
All exactly as it appears today: the interior, alas, tells a very different story.
Poslingford House was owned by Maj and Mrs Darley from 1912 until
Nthe outbreak of the Second World War, when it was requisitioned by the Army. When the war ended, the house was handed back to its owners, but in such a poor state of repair that Mrs Darley apparently refused to return.
In 1946, it was put up for sale and bought a year later by the parents of William Gentle, the present owner.
In January 1963, the main building suffered a catastrophic fire caused by an electrical fault in the roof. The resulting damage included the loss of the roof and all the windows and the complete gutting of the interior, with only the external walls and the damaged portico left standing.
Restoration carried out by Mr Gentle’s father took six years to complete and included the installation of a new roof, new chimney
Poslingford House, near Clare on the Essex-suffolk border, could be transformed into an elegant family home. £1m, plus about £750,000 to £1m in repairs