A once-in-a-Millennium chance to buy a castle...

For Sale: one castle (fit for a king, but needs some work); one Viking hut (great scope for the DIY enthusiast); and a partly undressed lady in a bathing machine – who shouts at you if you peek.

Everything must go with the demise of Scarborough's once prestigious Millennium attraction, telling the story of the town over 1,000 years.

When it was opened in 1993, by showman Henry Marshall, the seafront museum was hailed as the Yorkshire Coast's answer to York's Jorvik Centre.

But it seems quality is not always what sells on Scarborough's Golden Mile. and now the 2m business is closing its doors, due to a lack of visitors. Mr Marshall said: "It has proved to be a very expensive mistake. I started off with a Rolls-Royce, and now I have a second-hand Rover."

Despite being a runner-up in the region's tourism "Oscars" in 1994, the attraction failed to pull in enough visitors. After losing 1m on the business over 10 years, the family decided enough was enough.

The closure means the wooden sets and tableux which told the story of Scarborough must be sold. Bids are being invited for the Viking House, which illustrated the supposed settlement of the town by Viking chief Skarthy – a claim often disputed by historians, who believe the town is medieval in origin. Mr Marshall said: "Whoever buys it will have to take the whole Viking Family with it.Also there is King Edward I's Castle, with all the usual castle fittings. The loo smells a bit, and it runs down the outside wall. A smell machine goes with it.

"We don't expect a big rush for the house and castle – but the agent says they have gone up in price since Skarthy built his first house here."

But estate agent Duncan Cowen said no one really knew how much the exhibits were worth. He added: "They are unique. We have already had several expressions of interest, including some from overseas."

mark.branagan@ypn.co.uk