Hunting for a grand country home with striking looks?
Aketon Close, Follifoot, near Harrogate. Price: £2.65m Contact: Myrings tel: 01423 566400, www.myringsestate agents.com THIS magnificent country house boasts gothic good looks both inside and out and Richard and Rachel Weatherhead found it impossible not to surrender to its charms.
They bought the property six years ago after being seduced by its location, architectural interest and its equestrian facilities.
“We instantly fell in love with it. Within two minutes of walking through the door we knew we wanted it.
“It’s got so much character and although it is rural, it’s close to Harrogate, Wetherby and Leeds,” says Richard, a commercial property investor.
The castellated house was built in the late 19th century and is grade two listed boasting a wealth of period features including mullioned windows, panelling and original fireplaces.
It has a vestibule with floor mounted cast iron radiators, cloakroom, vaulted main galleried hallway with parquet flooring and an arched open stone fireplace, a drawing room with inglenook fireplace and Minster open fire, dining room with ceiling cornice, dado rails and pillared recessed fireplace and a snug.
The hand-built living kitchen has an Aga plus a pantry and a separate laundry room.
There are also lower floor cellars.
The first floor has a Minstrel’s gallery, master bedroom with fitted wardrobes and en-suite bathroom, a walk in wet room, a guest bedroom with en-suite and a house bathroom. On the second floor, there is a dressing room, bedroom five and eaves storage, which could provide a separate teenager suite.
Outside there are gardens, a triple detached garage, adjoining garden store and first floor office that could used as a staff annexe.
A landscaped Japanese water garden, created by the Weatherheads, has a sunken hot tub facing east to make the most of panoramic views across open countryside.
There is also a large green house and stable block with the original clock tower, incorporat- ing stables, tack room, sick bay, WC and hay barn, leading to a post and rail fenced menage and paddocks.
The house was once the home of former Yorkshire Post chairman Sir Kenneth Parkinson and his wife Dorothy Lane Fox, who were keen on country pursuits. They hosted the local hunt and the Weatherheads have revived that tradition.
“We both love riding, which is one of the reasons we bought the house in the first place. It’s also why we are selling,” says Richard.
“My wife has taken up eventing and although we have five stables here, we need something much bigger now so we are moving to another property with larger equestrian facilities.
“We will miss this house and we are very sad to go, but I’m afraid the horses have taken over.”
GRAND DESIGN: Aketon Close at Follifoot, near Harrogate.