Horse rac­ing his­tory bound to set buy­ers gal­lop­ing to idyl­lic lo­ca­tion

The in­side story

Yorkshire Post - Property - - PROPERTY NEWS -


THIS STUN­NING home sits in an idyl­lic ru­ral spot near Hare­wood and boasts an im­pres­sive horse rac­ing his­tory.

For many years, it was home to the Dickinson fam­ily, who were cham­pion Na­tional Hunt train­ers. The dy­nasty com­prised the late Tony and Mon­ica Dickinson and their son, Michael.

At the height of their suc­cess at the Po­plar House yard, Michael sad­dled the first five home in the 1983 Chel­tenham Gold Cup. It was an as­ton­ish­ing achieve­ment that has yet to be re­peated. The list of top steeplechasers trained at Po­plar House in­cluded Badsworth Boy, Bre­gawn, Gay Spar­tan, I’m a Driver, Rath­gor­man, Sil­ver Buck and Way­ward Lad.

The prop­erty has since been mod­ernised and is now the home of John and Ali­son Kit­son. The cou­ple, who have three chil­dren, bought it 16 years ago, af­ter re­lo­cat­ing from Hert­ford­shire back to their na­tive York­shire.

Po­plar House was in the ideal lo­ca­tion and had plenty of land for their daugh­ter’s horse and Shet­land pony. The rac­ing sta­bles had long gone so the cou­ple had new sta­bles erected.

“Part of the rea­son for buy­ing was the land and the fact you can ride out from here,” says Ali­son, who adds: “We bought the house from an ar­chi­tect and so it was quite con­tem­po­rary but in 2015 we mod­ernised it again.”

An ex­ten­sion was added and a new kitchen and mas­ter bed­room suite were in­stalled. Out­side, they cre­ated a large ter­race and made a wa­ter fea­ture from an old mill stone that was found in the grounds. The dé­cor was up­dated with help from in­te­rior de­signer Elaine Jack­son of Bos­ton Spa.

The prop­erty has a hall, fam­ily room, a study with builtin fur­ni­ture, a cloak­room, and a large, open plan break­fast kitchen with din­ing area and sit­ting area. This space boasts an atrium and bi-fold doors lead­ing onto a south-fac­ing pa­tio and gar­den. The kitchen has an Aga, wine fridge and a cen­tre is­land with a pop-up tele­vi­sion. The ground floor also has a util­ity room and a bed­room with en­suite. On the first floor, there is a mas­ter bed­room suite with sep­a­rate his and her dress­ing rooms, en-suite shower room and a bal­cony with views to­wards Ot­ley Chevin. There is a guest bed­room with a dress­ing area and en-suite plus two fur­ther dou­ble bed­rooms, a bath­room and a shower room.

Out­side, there is a park­ing area, dou­ble garage with a first­floor gym, orchard, gar­dens and sum­mer house. Be­yond this is a fenced pad­dock, two sta­bles and a gar­den store. In all, there are six acres.

The Kit­sons are sell­ing to down­size.

Contact: Strutt and Parker, tel: 01423 561274. www. strut­tand­

Part of the rea­son for buy­ing was the fact you can ride out. Ali­son Kit­son on a house once owned by cham­pion race­horse train­ers.

CHAM­PION HOME: Po­lar House was once a first-class rac­ing sta­ble. Now it is a lux­u­ri­ous home in one of York­shire’s most sought-af­ter lo­ca­tions.

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