Contact: Dacre, Son and Hartley, www.dacres.co.uk
Skipton is regularly listed as one of the best places to live in the UK thanks to its location on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales, its attractive high street and its high-performing grammar schools.
Yet there are very few prestigious period properties in the town. Historically it was a farming community, unlike nearby Ilkley, which had a spa and the domestic architecture to reflect its status.
So the sale of Brooklands, a magnificent Victorian home off Carleton Road, Skipton, is a rare and exciting opportunity for buyers.
The property is on the market for the first time in almost 50 years. Surveyor Jonathan Tinsley had a very happy childhood there after his parents bought it in 1969.
Mr Tinsley, a surveyor, says: “There’s an entry in my mother’s diary on the day they came to view it, which says that she and my father fell in love with the house as soon as they walked through the door. It’s a lovely house and there have only ever been four owners since it was built in 1870 by George King, a corn merchant.”
It also has a claim to fame. Previous owner William Farey, Mayor of Skipton, regularly played host to Salvation Army founder General William Booth when he was touring the North of England.
A letter from 1911 shows that General Booth, an early adopter of vegetarianism, was a very particular guest.
It lists his dietary requirements in great detail, including a recipe for his main meal to be served at 12.30pm prompt. The onion and potato bake served with salad, vegetables and a new-laid egg was accompanied by black tea with thinly sliced lemon (thinly is underlined).
For tea at 4.30pm he requested bread, butter and fried potatoes, otherwise known as a “chip butty”, along with soda water, preferably in a syphon, “then it can be conveniently taken into his bedroom”. The letter notes that his bed should be soft but not feather and the room should be quiet and darkened “as his sleep is easily broken”.
Brooklands, which needs some updating, retains many period features and has a sitting room, sun room, dining room, study, kitchen, family room, cloakroom, storage room, cellar, four double bedrooms and a house bathroom.
Outside, there are outhouses, a double garage, gardens and a kitchen garden plot with potential to build a detached house on, subject to planning permission.