Regency splendour in a property that provides the perfect escape
WHEN a 15-year-old Richard Marshall moved to a crumbling country house with his parents in the 1970s, he never dreamt that one day he’d buy the property from them.
“I moved there in the early 1970s when it needed a major refurbishment. My parents did a huge amount of work and made it structurally sound and it was their home for 20 years,” says Richard, who is managing partner at law firm Lupton Fawcett.
“They decided to sell because they wanted to build their own home. I’d always loved the house and I had a growing family so I bought it.”
He and wife Allison have put their own stamp on the grade two listed Regency property, updating the bathrooms and redecorating throughout.
The couple, who have three children, have also spent a small fortune on landscaping the grounds.
“It was swamped with rhodedendron bushes and laurels and so we have spent a massive amount of money replacing them with beautiful specimen trees.
“We wanted to improve the look and make the gardens easier to maintain,” says Richard.
Sweeping lawns and woodland surround Northgate House, which was built in the neoclassical style of the Regency period. It was constructed in 1812 for William Brook, a philanthropic wool magnate.
A marble tablet depicting the source of his wealth can still be found over the drawing room fireplace. It is just one of a host of period features, including a columned portico, curvaceous arches, moulded alcoves and a glass dome that allows natural to cascade down the staircase and into the hall.
The hall leads to a morning room, drawing room, dining room, study, breakfast kitchen, playroom, utility room, pantry, cloakroom and extensive cellars.
Upstairs, there is a galleried landing, master bedroom suite, a guest bedroom suite, six more bedrooms, three bathrooms and a large second floor library. Outside, there is parking, garaging, former stables and stores.
The grounds include lawns, a walled garden, a terrace and specimen trees, including a magnificent copper beech and holly.
Richard and Allison are selling after buying a home in the south west of Ireland.
“We bought a property in Kerry five years ago and the family is spending much more time there. When the children come home from school in the holidays that’s where we go and they regard that as their main home. I live here as it’s close to work and I am fully committed to Lupton Fawcett but it’s far too big for me. It really needs a family to fill it, which is why I am selling to downsize.
“Selling is a wrench. When you drive through the gates it’s like another world. It’s a wonderfully private place.”