Their most impressive legacy is the faithful recreation of a mid-1800s lodge that sits in the grounds of the main house.
“When we bought Comber House it came with planning permission for a standard four-bedroom detached property in the grounds but I didn’t think it was right for the setting,” says Denise, who had the designs redrawn and paid painstaking attention to detail. “We wanted to use reclaimed stone that would blend in with the main house and we had to wait a long time to find it.”
The 1,600 sq ft lodge was eventually built using stone from a property in Whitby, which was being demolished. “It cost a lot more than building a modern property but it looks as though it’s always been there and that’s what we wanted,” says Denise.
The Rajabs bought the former rectory in 2009 and have spent a small fortune on the building and its interiors. They also commissioned a new pool house and leisure suite.
Comber House, which dates from 1841, has 4,500 sq ft of space and is set in 1.2 acres. It is arranged as two distinct living quarters and has a magnificent original staircase, study with bespoke woodwork by Mouseman of Kilburn, a drawing room, dining kitchen by Chalon and a breakfast kitchen by The Handmade Kitchen Company of Pickering. Also on the ground floor is a sitting room and garden room.
On the first floor, there is a galleried landing, master bedroom with dressing room, two bathrooms and five further double bedrooms, two of which have en-suite shower rooms.
The lodge has an entrance hall, dining kitchen, sitting room, utility, cloakroom and orangery. Upstairs are three large double bedrooms, an en-suite shower room and a bathroom.
The leisure suite has a 30ft indoor pool, sauna, hot tub and gym.
Comber House has potential to be a boutique hotel and/or spa and the main house can easily be split into two homes.
The property is in the heart of Thornton-le-dale village, near Pickering and has quick and easy access to the A64 and the train station at Malton, where there are services to York, London, Leeds, Newcastle and Edinburgh.
Comber House, Thornton le Dale, Price: £2,495,950
Contact: Cundalls, www.cundalls.co.uk