A Grade II* Elizabethan country house, steeped in history, set within about 72 acres.
Blo Norton Hall is a small estate steeped in history. The moated site dates back to 1280, upon which the current house stands. Of timber frame, wattle and daub and crow stepped brick gables, the Grade II* Hall is an imposing example of Elizabethan architecture befitting the fine setting at the end of a lime tree avenued drive.
The Hall is surrounded by wonderfully mature gardens of topiary, parterre and high hedging, beyond which is the park and woodland. Within the estate are a pair of Victorian cottages, hard tennis court, with a land holding of about 72 acres.
Since 2009, the Hall and cottages have been subject to a rolling programme of repair and improvement including new plumbing and wiring, redecoration, new drainage and replacement of defective areas of roof.
The main house is architecturally distinguished both internally and externally. The handsome main façade is classic Elizabethan with three bays, hood-moulded architraves, chamfered mullion windows, overhanging eaves and right up to the impressive octagonal chimney shafts. Internal delights include stained glass, original panelling, large open fireplaces and original flooring. It is a wonderfully atmospheric house.
At the heart of the house is the dining hall, with 16th century panelling, open fireplace and grand proportions, with natural light from both the east and west. This leads through to the elegant drawing room, again with panelling and fireplace, and a living room with access out to the west facing gardens. A pleasant surprise is the brilliant open plan kitchen/dining area, measuring about 13.2m x 5.9m, providing a modern way of living rarely afforded to houses of this vintage. With light from all aspects, a central island unit, fireplace and access out to gardens it is a lovely focal point of living at the Hall. In addition there are two further reception rooms to be utilised to personal requirements and the house enjoys two separate staircases both of note, with a particularly fine oak staircase.
The bedrooms are all equally as impressive, and again have been tailored for modern day living with almost all rooms enjoying en suite bath/shower rooms. The first floor hosts six double bedrooms, any of which could be defined as the principal bedroom given their scale and outlook. The bathrooms are well fitted and spacious, with either a bath, shower or both.
The second floor provides a further three bedrooms, all with bathrooms. Also on the second floor is a substantial games room measuring 13.25m x 3.5m.
The formal gardens to the Hall are predominantly to the north, west and south-west of the house providing a fitting backdrop to the majesty of the property. There are defined areas divided by thick hornbeam hedging, gravelled pathways and lawn, with clipped yew topiary and buxus providing points of interest throughout. Immediately adjoining the west of the house is a brick paved terrace, providing a delightful suntrap positioned between the north and south wings, and overlooking a parterre of box and bay. Formal lawn sweeps away from the house, with central gravel path, to an ornamental pond with the path continuing to a gate to a bridge over the moat to the park beyond. Within the immediate gardens are an orchard, seating areas for outside dining and beds of sedum and lavender.
Wider grounds, land and outbuildings
Blo Norton Hall is approached over a driveway sweeping down through a lime tree avenue, with meadows either side passing over the former moat with cattle grid, arriving in front of the house with lawned turning circle and plenty of parking either side, complete with single garage. The drive continues to the south, leading to a range of outbuildings around a courtyard. These buildings provide great scope for a multitude of uses, and would make an ideal area for a swimming pool for example.
To the south of the buildings, via a gravelled path through wrought iron fencing and gate, is the hard tennis court, with the path continuing to the cottages.
The majority of the land is made up of arable land, park and meadows. The park stretches from the east to the west of the estate with fine mature trees, including oak, beech, lime and willow. The river Little Ouse meanders along the southern boundary of the park. To the west of the Hall is a block of productive Grade 3 arable land with independent access to the public road. There is an established woodland of mixed broadleaf trees in the south western corner of the park.
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The Hall exudes history, from the moment you arrive to every room in the house. It's a real gem.Ben RivettProperty agent