Unique Property Bulletin 2 June 2013

Prime Martello

Martello Tower 1 – Kent (c) 2013 David Anstiss

Sounds like a high quality cheese! Not in this instance, and not just any Martello Tower, this is Number 1. A Prime Martello. These things are genuinely rare. They are finite. This one, situated in Kent, is a splendid example, and has exquisite views.

Martello Tower – Wondeful Views In Context (c) 2013 Your Move Agencies

Agency Narrative: FOR SALE BY TENDER, CLOSING DATE FOR OFFERS BY 22ND JUNE, 2013. A unique opportunity has arisen to purchase this Grade II listed Martello Tower in Folkestone, Kent. Martello Tower number one stands high and proud on the east cliff of Folkestone.

Adjoining The Warren just off Wear Bay Road. It has uninterrupted 360 degree views across the English Channel (France is visible in clear weather), the White Cliffs of Dover, the town of Folkestone and Dungeness power station in the distance.

Martello Tower 1 – Interesting Interior (c) 2013 Your Move Agencies

Originally there were 103 towers built between 1804 and 1812 during the Napoleonic Wars as part of the coastal defences for the UK against threat of foreign invasion. Today approximately only 45 of the towers remain, many are in ruins and a small number have been converted, with only nine remaining in their original condition. Martello Tower number one was constructed in approximately 1804 and the present owner purchased the property in 1981 where it has since been a labour of love to convert the property into a habitable home. With the majority of renovation work complete new purchasers would be able to finish the internal renovation to their own style and specification. The property itself is arranged over four floors. To the ground floor there is an entrance hall, three bedrooms, with an en-suite shower room to the master bedroom, and a large family bathroom with sauna. Following up the wooden staircase, the first floor area is currently used as an open plan kitchen/diner with a perfectly recessed area at the front of the building for a breakfast table that enjoys the stunning views. The second floor is reached by walking up a brick tunnelled staircase and opens out into one large open room that has benched seating around the entire perimeter of the room. With restricted head room, this floor would lend itself well as a snug/library, playroom or even possibly a cinema. At the top floor there is an open plan lounge area with panoramic 360 degree views. The current owner has thoughtfully designed this room, capitalising perfectly on the stunning surrounding views. The width of the spaces for the windows from the back to the front increase in size with the front facing measuring approximately 1.8m in size, while those to the rear just 0.45m. 

Martello Tower 1, Kent (c) 2013 Robin Webster

Externally The Tower is set in a good sized plot, which could benefit from some further landscaping. Something that you will not notice at first glance is the underground garage/workshop that is approx 18.2m x 6.4m and is currently stocked with numerous industrial sized machinery pieces that have assisted in the renovations to date. Once the renovations have been completed, this garage would lend itself perfectly to a generously sized garage with space for several cars and more…. With such an unique location and alluring potential, this is a fine opportunity to purchase something that could become not only a perfect family home, but has the potential to be one the most remarkable residences in the UK. Viewings are strictly by appointment only.

Location: Martello Tower, 1, The Warren, Folkestone, Kent, CT19 6NQ.

Tenure: Freehold.


Contact Your-Move Agencies Tel: 01303 850 085




This One Time At Band Camp

Liskeard Silver Band Hall, Liskeard, Cornwall (c) 2013 Countrywide

Not quite American Pie, More like rice pie. This former Silver Band Hall is a detached harmony at £65,000. Singing all the way to tht bank (sorry).

Agency Narrative: An opportunity to acquire a substantial, versatile, two storey in parts, detached Henry Rice building for refurbishment/repair. Offering potential for a variety of uses, subject to any requisite consents, located in proximity of Liskeard town centre.

Note: The gross internal area (as per VOA website) is 178.1 square metres. Planning: Interested parties must make and rely upon their own enquiries of Cornwall Council Planning Department on 0300 1234 151.

Existing accommodation: Ground Floor: Entrance hall with ladies and gentlemens wc’s, main hall, store room, kitchen, rear lobby giving access to a pedestrian side entrance.First Floor: Former practise room. Outside: There is an enclosed elevated frontage and a pestrian walkway to the side and rear of the property.

Location: Liskeard Silver Band Hall, Barn Street, Liskeard, Cornwall, PL14 4BL.

Tenure: Freehold.

Guide: £65,000Lot 135 – For Auction 19th June 2013. Remember FTSAA just in case.

Contact Countrywide Auctioneers Tel: 0870 241 4343.

Online Brochure …..



Deal At Depot, Deal

Nice Masonry – Deal Depot Building Kent (c) 2013 Clive Emson.

Not totally sure what this was, but it is almost 110 years old, and a neat looking detached building. Also after the several thousand extra visitors last week care of the MSN Feature – thankyou Donna – we have had a little criticism of our Bulletin on the comments section – including maybe a little bias towards property in the northern climbs. So we are having a good old rummage in the big box of unique property to find some extra southern coast buildings for this week.

Detached, Deal Depot – A Good Deal ? (c) 2013 Clive Emson.

From brief studying, it appears to come back as an Old Lorry Depot. Then possibly a Farm Shop. Though readers will need to exercise their own due diligence and examine the thing in more detail before sticking your paw in the air and waiving at the auctioneer.

Agency Narrative: A former depot situated between residential properties in the village of Worth, which lies between Deal (south) and Sandwich (north) and considered to have potential for re-development with a pair of dwellings, a terrace or, perhaps, a single detached dwelling, subject to all the necessary consents being obtainable.

Planning: Interested applicants are advised to make their own enquiries with the Local Planning Authority, Dover District Council, White Cliffs Business Park, Dover, Kent, CT16 3PJ. Tel: 01304 872486.

Location: Former Worth Depot, Deal Road, Worth, Deal, Kent, CT14 0BG.

Tenure: Freehold.

Guide: £80,000 Lot 105 – Auction: 18 June 2013.

Contact Clive Emson Auctioneers Tel: 0845 8500333 – Kevin Gilbert or Dave Henwood.

Online Details ….



Peering or Piering Back

South Parade Pier, Southsea, Hampshire (c) 2012 Clive Emson

Whilst concentrating on the South Coast for the majority of this Bulletin, we had an email from someone looking for a place to berth a large ship which they want to live aboard.

No it isn’t as eccentric as you might thing. Yours truly has done it. The experience was a sublime adventure [the sort we hope to replicate as ber the Bulletin Bus idea later in this edition]. Living aboard a fair sized ship, you wake up in the morning, and take your coffee and breakfast toast up to the ship’s bridge, then enjoy a fantastic sea view. It really doesn’t get much better than that.

A good thing is that the view can be changed if you wish. If you aren’t one of the old sea salts that abound the British Isles, there are plenty of retired captains about keen to keep their hours up. Or just spend some quality time going over old sea stories.  

Life On Board Is Sublime – MV Lochmor (c) 2001 Russ McLean

Please note, the above ship is just an EXAMPLE, albeit an ACTUAL case that worked out well for us here at an earlier Unique Property Bulletin Adventure. Notwithstanding a little reminiscing, our reader, this week, has their own (mighty fine) ship needing a decent berth.

The usual problem with buying or owning the larger ship – instead of what might be cheekily termed the smaller “plastic boat” sort of thing is where to berth them. Wharfage can be at a premium. Often a horrendous cost just for a place bring your ship alongside.

We had a brief look around for our reader, and the best we can do for an inexpensive – but amazing place – to set your springs to, is at Southsea Pier. We featured this wonderful unusual property in a November 2012 edition of the Bulletin


From what we can gather it is still open to offers. Clive Emson the auctioneers still have their web listing page “live”….


A lovely ship at the end of this pier may make it an interesting place to live. Such a joint endeavour – ship AND pier, might just crystallise into an initiative to save and restore this fine pier. Given the Southsea Pier is an FTSAA, it may be an idea to see whether (after pier survey and due diligence) an offer around £150,000 might buy the old pier at Southsea.

The idea adds something to the mix. A fabulous ship and wonderful pier together. Well worth Peering or Piering Back into earlier Bulletins. You never know what hidde goodies lurk in the past webpages of this unusual property website?

Isle of Wight Ferry MV Southsea (c) 2012 Unique Property Bulletin

Another reason why we love Southsea ! The MV Southsea ship would have made a wonderful addition to Southsea Pier – but alas that couldn’t happen now as the old girl has gone to that place where all old clunker boats go. Ship Heaven.

In conclusion, if you have a ship and nowhere to berth her, maybe have a word with Clive Emson Auctioneer’s and see what price Southsea Pier might be available for.

Fingers crossed that this helps our reader with what is by any accounts a lovely ship. Please, when the time comes, can we feature that spectacular vessel. All the best. The Unique Property Team.

Location: South Parade Pier, South Parade, Southsea, Hampshire, PO4 0SW.

Tenure: Freehold.

Guide: UNSOLD – FTSAA. £190,000 to £210,000. Former Auction Lot 115. Date 12/12/12.

Contact Clive Emson Auctioneers Tel: 0845 6001265.






Reflected Glory

Arts & Crafts Architecture – Black Clauchrie House, Ayrshire (c) 2013 Wilsons

Firstly a thankyou. Paul Bott is the property wizard that managed to sell one of our own buildings [not the one above – another totally different property] in the middle of the banking crisis when we thought it couldn’t be done. Paul also achieved a very good price.

He doesn’t know it, but this Unique Property Bulletin online publication probably wouldn’t be here if Paul Bott hadn’t managed what we thought was impossible – selling a building in a property snarl-up. How has Paul helped the Unique Property Bulletin ? Well we hadn’t realised that a growing website does cost a fair amount of money. Don’t get us wrong, the huge and enduring increases in readership numbers is VERY much APPRECIATED. The Bulletin is now wiping it’s face financially. It is designed to be dedicated non-profit making project. A zero-sum enterprise run for the enjoyment of both contributors and readers. But it did need a four figure budget to get started and keep going. Paul, in his kind and courteous way managed to help us have some spare cash left over from the earlier building sale, and a large number of those freed up fivers have worked their magic to help with the seedcorn money required to launch and keep the Unique Property Bulletin online.

If we haven’t said it before, then here we remedy that omission. Thankyou Paul.

This is why, when Paul emailed us the Wilson’s Auction news of a “Private Treaty” division starting there, we were, and are delighted to include this “Arts & Crafts” specialist period gem for him.

Extra Space For Holiday Visitors or the In-laws (c) 2013 Wilsons

Agency Narrative: Black Clauchrie Hose is a fine example of a late Victorian (c1898 – 1901) Arts & Crafts country house with a Scottish Renaissance influence, designed by the Ayrshire architect, J K Hunter.

The house, originally a luxurious shooting lodge, has principal accommodation arranged around a central gravel courtyard and a range of outbuildings. The main house has some fine and carefully preserved features including dressed exposed timbers to ceilings, cornices, skirtings, facings and doors.

Grand Interiors of the Main Building (c) 2013 Wilsons

All reception rooms and halls have wooden panelling with unique feature fireplaces. All the bedrooms have original fire places and service bells. Whilst the original bathroom fittings have been retained, the property has been brought up to meet modern day requirements with ensuite bathrooms installed in some of the bedrooms.

A particular feature of Black Clauchrie is the Ballroom. Originally designed by James Carrick as the billiard room, it has an inglenook fireplace, high vaulted ceiling with exposed timbers and a minstrel’s gallery. There is also a very large, original, conservatory. The generous nature of the accommodation with its feature rooms, principal and secondary accommodation has meant that over the years Black Clauchrie has played host not only to extensive shooting parties but more recently it has been the setting for occasional small weddings, celebrations and holiday lets.

Location: Black Clauchrie House, Barrhill, Girvan, South Ayrshire, KA26 0RD.

Tenure: Feuhold (Scottish Equivalent of Freehold).

Guide: £795,000.

Contact Wilsons Auction House Tel: 01294 833 444 – Mr Paul Bott.





YMCA – Youth Hostel (c) 2013 Savills

This is a lovely big detached lump of building. 7 Bedrooms; 2 Reception Rooms; 3 Bathrooms; Plus a Manager’s Apartment. There is a garden, and it is very sunny near the Arctic this time of year.

Agency Narrative: The property occupies a village location, only 3 miles to the west of John o’ Groats, in the far north east of Scotland. The county of Caithness is renowned for its fertile farmland, flagstone dykes and rugged coastline, with views of the Orkney Isles. It is surrounded by the wild hills of Sutherland to the south and west. Both Thurso and Wick provide excellent local facilities, while the regional centre of Inverness has all the services associated with a thriving city, including theatres, retail parks, specialist shops and restaurants. Geographically, Caithness may appear fairly isolated, it can be reached with relative ease. The A9 provides excellent access by road from the south, both Wick and Thurso have a main line railway stations with regular services to Inverness and Wick has an airport with flights to both Edinburgh (British Airways) and to Aberdeen, with onward connections to a variety of UK destinations.

YMCA – Functional But Spacious Interior (c) 2013 Savills

The area is renowned for its sporting and leisure facilities, which include salmon fishing on the Thurso and Wick Rivers, trout fishing on the nearby Loch Watten. There are several golf courses, locally at Wick, Thurso, Reay and Lybster and further down the coast at Helmsdale, Brora, Golspie and Royal Dornoch. Caithness is also renowned for its bird life and archaeological remains and Thurso is a popular destination for surfers.

As for this building being a former YMCA classic …


That video still makes a load of oldies like the writer of this smile 🙂 You cannot help it. Also check the number of people who have viewed this clip! This track dedicated to David Dewar – congratulations on the good news by the way David.

Not sure if you will have 32,000,000 visitors that looked in on the famous eponymous clip above visiting you at Canisbay, but even a small percentage would make your new home a thriving business.

Location: YMCA – Youth Hostel, Canisbay, Wick, KW1 4YH.

Tenure: Feuhold (Scottish Equivalent of Freehold).

Guide: £150,000 – A lot of bricks and mortar for little money.

Contact Savills Agencies Tel: 0131 247 3700 – Mr Malcolm Leslie.




and finally …..

Hit The Road Jack

Number 28 To High Wycombe (c) 2013 Russ McLean & Evans Collection

Regular readers may recall we ran an odd abode in the 5th May Bulletin


It is the last listing on that page. We ended by asking if anyone went ahead and bought a double decker bus – emulating knight driver Sir Cliff Richard and the old film: Summer Holiday brigade to let us know how they get on.

Then after a long think, the idea crystallised – TIME FOR AN ADVENTURE HERE.

Rather than endure the economic misery and austerity – life is too short. So we decided to follow Sir Cliff’s example – we wrote to another knight of the realm – a bus supremo. There appeared a lottery sized chance of a reply. Or so we thought.

Well that just goes to show us. The officer and gentleman responded! A little shock this end. Especially as one family member is now getting very nervous having a double decker bus parked on his drive. He has the only size drive that one of these big red beauties can fit on. Beaky says “you’re not getting a bus” Aye right, that’s what you think 🙂 Well David, the old man helped a little in you getting a Fire Engine, so payback time !!!

In all seriousness, parking such a large vehicle isn’t a worry. There is a place to put the bus sorted out (and your house driveway and reputation with the neighbours safe Beakster). Besides the whole purpose of this small adventure is to hit the road. Meet eccentric people. We sure have a backlog of invitations. For example come up for coffee, from the wonderful Mr Taylor at Tarbat Ness Lighthouse….

Tarbat Ness Lighthouse (c) 2013 Kirsty Jarman

All the way to readers at Lands End and John O’Groats. A Busy Bulletin Bus of this style perhaps…

Bus Type & Exhibition Grade/Class – Example (c) 2013 Gavin 2492

Possibly Something Like This Might Fit The Bill

So after hearing from one of the country’s premier bus owners, the eccentric writer of this edition tapping away at the keyboard is now looking forward to a double decker driving assessment courtesy of a very nice knight.

A dedicated page/blog on the Unique Property Bulletin Bus project to let folk know how this endeavour goes will soon be added to the website. Hopefully a very nice, unmistakable Number 28 to High Wycombe may be headed to your place. Though so we won’t be asked to actually go to High Wycombe by fare paying passengers the Unique Property Bulletin Buss will be freshly painted and signwritten appropriately.

We are already looking forward to inviting folk to come aboard the Unique Property Bulletin Bus and have a coffee and a yarn.

That is what this website is all about. Also it is about time we stopped poking readers to go on an adventure, and start making an effort in that direction ourselves.

That leads us onto the secondary purpose of a bus adveture:

The Final Frontier: To go on a 5 month mission; to explore strange new buildings; to seek out new life and eccentrics; to boldly go where no bus has gone before.

Apologies to the late great Gene Roddenberry and all his supporters. Once our bus adventure is completed – in fact during it – we hope to list LOTS more interesting and unique property for you, our wonderful band of unusual readers!

More news soon. Please watch this space…

Unique Property Adventure – Bulletin Bus Blog