Hales Hall goes up for sale
A historically important Grade I listed Norfolk house is for sale with a guide price of �1.695m.
Hales Hall, near Loddon, has only been on the market twice in the last 150 years, and its 184ft great barn, which is a popular wedding venue, is the largest brick-built Tudor barn in England.
There has been a house on the site for more than 1,000 years and the great barn and the hall are the surviving remains of a once great house owned by Sir James Hobart, attorney general to Henry VII.
The buildings were derelict when they were purchased by current owners Terence and Judy Read in 1971 and the couple has overseen extensive restoration works over the years.
The Reads are planning to move to a smaller home and yesterday said they had enjoyed many happy years in the picturesque property.
Mr Read said: 'There is so much history here, it is unbelievable. It is not just this house, but the site itself.
'We have spent many happy years here. It is very much a family house. Our two boys thoroughly enjoyed it here and it would be nice to see another family here. There is plenty for youngsters to do in the area.'
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He said the couple would be sorry to say goodbye to the property, which has been lovingly restored.
Hales Hall is on the market with Savills and the main house includes a drawing room, dining room, sitting room, morning room, vaulted room and six bedrooms.
Porter's Lodge has a kitchen/breakfast room, sitting room, bedroom and bathroom and Bothy Cottage has a sitting room, kitchen, three bedrooms and bathroom.
The Grade I listed Tudor great barn, which has been restored and re-roofed in 1996, currently has planning permission for up to 30 weddings per year and permission is being sought to increase this to 75 weddings per year.
Mr and Mrs Read have also enjoyed making the property available for charity fundraising and theatre and concert events.
The house and barn are set in moated grounds of nine acres.
Louis de Soissons, head of residential and a director at Savills, said the property is historically significant and architecturally important.
'Norfolk throws up these unexpected gems from time to time,' he said.
'A lot of people would not know the house was there unless they had been to a wedding there. It is very tucked away right at the end of the common. There has been a house on that site for 1,100 years. It was one of the greatest houses in Norfolk. Before Blickling Hall was built it was the Hobart principal seat.'
For more pictures and a glimpse inside Hales Hall see today's EDP property section.