Unique Property Bulletin 26 May 2013

Sea Breeze Paradise – Isle of Man Rarity

Lighthouse Keeper’s House, Isle of Man (c) 2013 Mr Richard Hoare

Even with the vagaries of website programming, HTML codes and the whole gamut that goes into keeping an internet website like the Unique Property Bulletin online, it is becoming an absolute delight to study and bring together some of the finest unusual buildings – and locations – in the UK for the wonderful folk who read this Bulletin. Especially the new friends who regularly email the Unique Property Bulletin with news and views.

This week’s Bulletin is being written by the pharologist – a word recently unknown here. Though with a huge amount of gratitude to the author and journalist Jon Stock who used this unusual name when he kindly helped boost visitor numbers by a huge amount – thankyou Jon …


To paraphrase Jon Stock, we have a guilty secret. Perhaps to regular readers – not so secret – a lifelong love of lighthouses. It has almost become an effort NOT to include too many of these. However, this week we just could not resist another delight. This lighthouse keeper’s home for sale is on the Isle of Man.

Splendid Setting – Douglas Head Lighthouse (c) 2013 Mr Andy Stephenson

At the main harbour for the Isle of Man stands the sentinel of the Douglas Head Lighthouse. From here you can watch the ships go by. Plus wildlife and weather, and sea, and…. well just the paradise of a view. To see if this gem by the sea is for you, please check out the photo montage …

Douglas Lighthouse Keeper’s House Photo Montage

If we weren’t all lighthoused-out here at the Bulletin, this is one that we would be making an offer on. Hopefully one or two of our readers may feel the same way, and take a trip across to the Isle of Man with a view to buying somewhere with one of the best views in the British Isles.

Interesting Weather – Douglas Head Lighthouse (c) 2013 Mr Andrew Abbott

Please Note: The lighthouse tower is NOT for sale. It is the Principal Lighthouse Keeper’s Dwelling plus the Assistant Lighthouse Keeper’s Dwelling that ARE FOR SALE. At this time BOTH of these buildings have been joined to form ONE marvellous and sizeable home. It is certainly possible to return them to the original two dwellings if that arrangement is preferable to a new owner. Any questions, please feel free to ask.

Location: Lighthouse Keeper’s Cottage, Douglas Head Lighthouse, Douglas Head, Isle of Man, IM1 5BP.

Tenure: Freehold.

Guide: £499,950.

Contact Owner Direct: douglaslighthouse [at] hotmail.com

Please insert @ in place of [at] when emailing. This is a courtesy which helps us avoid the owner being bombarded with spam from automated email address hoover robots.

For further photos and information, please contact the owner direct.


Any problems with the emails, please let us know and we shall do the honours and introduce enquirer to owner directly. Just contact us at:



Cornwall Chapel & Cloches

Former Chapel, Penzance, Cornwall (c) 2013 Countrywide Property Auctions

This looks like something from the that wonderful television series on living a self-sufficient lifestyle in good humour – The Good Life. Not just good good for life, but this offering a good price and has that very important planning permission in place. For this former chapel in Cornwall the consent is to turn this detached building into your new home. Not sure if the cloches are included.

Detached Chapel With Planning Permission (c) 2013 Countrywide Property Auctions

Auctioneer’s Narrative: A detached former chapel with the benefit of garden and off road parking provision and planning permission in place for the creation of a four bedroom residential dwelling, within this highly sought after location. Planning: A Grant of Conditional Planning Permission was issued by Cornwall Council Planning Department on the 12th October 2012 for ‘Conversion of redundant Chapel to a single dwelling’. Interested parties must make and rely upon their own planning enquiries of Cornwall Council Planning Department on 0300 1234 151.

Proposed Accommodation: Ground Floor: Entrance hall, dining room, living room, kitchen/breakfast room, pantry, utility. Proposed First Floor: Landing, master bedroom with en-suite shower room, bedroom two, bedroom three, bedroom four, bathroom. Outside: Garden lying predominantly to the rear of the property. Parking: On drive for several vehicles.

Location: Former Chapel, Trevean Lane, Rosudgeon, Penzance, Cornwall, TR20 9PD.

Tenure: Freehold.

Guide: £85,000 + For Sale By Auction – Lot 149 – 19th June 2013

Contact Miller Countrywide Tel: 01736 364260 or 0870 241 4343.

Online Brochure ….



Booking Off With A Bargain

Former Rossington Library, Doncaster (c) 2013 Regional Property Auctions

This library is ending the current career, and who knows what is on the books for a large 0.62 acre plot with an interesting building, at a very keen price? So low that you might not need to borrow any books, sorry, meant – you might not need to borrow any money! Plus there appears to be a buy one, get one free sort of deal going on with this. Looking at the small print, there is an extra detached building included. To quote: “A former single storey Detached Library building and a further detached property which was formerly a Housing Office” Curious. If this was 300 miles north, near to where the Bulletin is written, we would certainly be going along to the sale on the day. By the way, it may be a day at the races – the auction is being held at Doncaster Race Course.

Back in the 21st October 2012 Unique Property Bulletin we featured an adventure which we are determined to embark upon – with an old library …


[Second property from the top of this Bulletin]

There is a future for these learned centres of knowledge. It is just finding the right balance. Our view expressed before is to use the main commercial party for library/internet/community use, and seek planning consent to turn a residual/spare part into an unusual home for an owner occupier. Who, in turn, if the notion appealed, might like an interesting lifestyle with a former library? Though of course this is not what every reader is looking for, but we have certainly been surprised at how many of our current 24,000 readers would like this sort of lifestyle. Judging by the email at least.

Please note, following internet webserver difficulties we have had to relocate one of our other websites onto a completely different webserver – so some weblinks in that article are currently offline. More detail will emerge about library revitalisation projects on one of our sister websites in due course ….


(Currently under construction – and applies to the WHOLE of the UK)

Former Rossington Library, Doncaster (c) 2013 Regional Property Auctions

Location: Former Rossington Library & Housing Office, McConnel Crescent, Rossington, Doncaster, DN11 0PL.

Tenure: Freehold.

Guide: £80,000 – Auction Date 12 June 2013.

Contact Regional Property Auctions Tel: 0844 967 0604Online Brochure ….



Island Beach House Beauty

Los Alisios – Check Out The Beach House Brochure (c) 2013 Linda & Hugh Crossley

In our online Bulletin, we have featured just 4 overseas properties – in comparison to 350 unusual UK based buildings listed over the past 12 months. Please forgive us this rare indulgence of an offshore diamond.

This Beach House, is on one of the nicest islands in world just had to find its way through the keyboard and onto the website. OK it is a plane journey away, and also one for the higher budget. But we do aim to cover the full financial spectrum £10,000 to £10,000,000. This one is worth studying, for it seems like paradise.

The Canary Islands are a lot of fun. One of our lot is recently back from there. This Youtube link (not related to ourselves or the Bulletin) gives a reasonable idea of what the island has to offer…


Nice Fast Frame Editing By The Way – Even Nicer Forts & Martellos

The Beach House, Los Alisios, just tickled our fancy. For many this is on the “if only” list, or after a lottery win perhaps. But there are a few folk to whom this may be just the ticket.

Location: Puerto del Carmen, Lanzarote, Canary Islands.

Tenure: Spanish Freehold Equivalent.

Guide: £1,200,000 (or Euro Equivalent at owner’s discretion).

Contact & Online Brochure:-

Beach House – Short Brochure – Los Alisios – Canary Islands


Mobile Device Feedback Please

The LinkedIn CEO has just been on a television interview and advised that his company’s internet access has moved from 8% to 30% across to the mobile phone platform. That is a lot when your company has 225,000,000 visitors.

We are aware that this embryonic Unique Property Bulletin online facility also has a significant movement away from Desktop PC to Tablet/Kindle devices and especially the new generation of mobile phones.

Please could readers let us know of their experience when using mobile devices to access our website? One considerable concern is that the some content is lost to mobile device visitors. An example can be the right column which carries unique properties and the definitive library list of past issues, is visible to Desktop PC visitors, but not Mobile Phones (we are working on this issue). Any feedback and advisory information on how to improve this website is welcome. Thanks.



Lyth Mill – Little Money

Milton Mill & Blacksmiths, Lyth, Caithness (c) 2013 Munro & Noble

This may seem an odd start, but please consider buying an lpg car. Three years ago, one of our lot here did. At the time, the seller said: “It’ll be a long time before you go back to petrol“. He was right, and the reason soon became apparent. When was the last time you had a big grin filling up at the petrol station? Usually this is a very painful and financially distressing event. If you haven’t tried an lpg car, then your wallet will be in for a marvellous surprise. As most drivers know, this is because of a differential in fuel costs. Lpg is usually half the price of petrol. That only really becomes apparent when you have to fill the fuel tank up. Instead of £80 it can be less than £40. Time after time after time. Right now, just work out on the back of the proverbial envelope how much you spend each year on petrol (sorry if you are a rail of bus customer – we will address that in another issue). Startling? Also very real. The annual savings of lpg cars can run into several thousand pounds. That is your money going a wasting. Just give yourself a big bunch of crisp £5 notes – say £4,000 of them for example. Would that brighten your day?

So how does all this preamble affect the Milton Mill at Lyth? Well this building is fairly remote. Whilst we do our best to balance the geographic nature of the Unique Property Bulletin – Cornwall to Kent Manchester to the Isle of Man – it is difficult fact to avoid. That interesting and very economical property crops up frequently in remote places. Contrary to received wisdom it isn’t “grim up north”. It is interesting, varied, scenic, and very civilised. Unique property is also often more affordable. The further you go, the further your money goes ifor your ideal home.

This is a prime example. Where else would you buy a former water mill and blacksmiths, with almost half an acre of land AND planning permission already in place for £65,000 ?

Agency Narrative: An opportunity to purchase a disused Water Mill and former Blacksmith’s Workshop with full planning permission for conversion into a three bedroom family dwelling house situated on a plot that extends to approximately 0.447 acres, close to the village of Lyth, Caithness Milton Mill comprises of a disused Water Mill and Blacksmith’s Workshop, which requires total renovation, but has great potential to become a substantial family home. The property has four main sections and sits on a plot that extends to approx 0.447 acres. Milton Mill has been granted full planning permission for conversion into a three bedroom family dwelling house and installation of a sewerage treatment plant with out-fall to burn and the upgrade of the existing vehicle access has also been granted.

Planning Permission: Reference: 06/00252/FULCA. Copies of the planning permission and of the architect’s drawings can be requested from Munro & Noble Property Shop.

Location: Milton Watermill & Blacksmiths, Lyth, Caithness, KW1 4UD.

Tenure: Feuhold (Scottish Equivalent of Freehold).

Guide: Offers Over £65,000.

Contact Munro & Noble Solicitors Tel: 01463 225533.



and plan drawings [if the pdf format file has download problems, please call the agent for a brochure to be posted out via old fashioned Royal Mail] ….



Courting Splendour

Burton Upon Trent County Court, Staffordshire (c) 2013 GVA Grimley Ltd

A magnificent Grade II Listed edifice, and lots of building for the buck. This time we have an unusual property in Staffordshire. Many years ago, a friend who specialised in the London property market (a scary environment at the best of times) came out with a memorable phrase: “How much does it cost to park your waste paper bin”. That was a sentence that conveyed a deeper meaning to those in the property world. Whilst contrasting the mundane fact – at about one square foot, the footprint of a bin does cost money to place. In the case of this substantial former county court about £50 (per square foot). Not that bad, for such a fine building. Talking of fines, spot the guilty looking object awaiting his fine in this interior photograph.

Burton Upon Trent Court – If Rooms Could Talk ! (c) 2013 GVA Grimley Ltd

For the right person, and of course, subject to planning permission, this might make a marvellous and character filled place to turn into a home, or homes.

Agency Narrative: The property was purpose built in 1862 as a County Court with an austere three storey Italianate stone facade and brick rear extension. There are two entrances on the frontage at each edge of the property. The ground floor provides some open plan offices and a double height courtroom. The first and second floor provide additional office and storage space. There is car parking on the frontage for approximately 8 vehicles. Approximately 8,450 sq ft (785 sq m). Suitable for a number of alternative uses (subject to planning)

Location: Former Burton Upon Trent County Court, 165, Station Street, Burton On Trent, Staffordshire, DE14 1BP.

Tenure: Freehold.

Guide: £425,000

Contact GVA Grimley Agencies Tel: 0121 609 8059 Laura Loftus or: 0121 609 8388 Carl Potter.

Online Brochure …..



and finally …..

Towering Blast From The Past

The Tower, Popes Hill, Kingsclere (c) 2012 Knight Frank

On 4th November 2012 we included this exceptional conversion – The Tower, Popes Hill, Kingsclere, Newbury, Berkshire, RG20 5SJ – formerly Drakes Brewery Tower at £399,000. Some six month’s later it caught our eye again. Anyone fancy giving the agent concerned – Mr Mark Potter a phone call 01256 350 600 to see if there has been any ‘adjustment’. After six months and still up online at the otherwise excellent Knight Frank website we would hope that there may be a little ‘flexibility’ in the price on the seller’s behalf? It is has been a local holiday Friday and is a Bank Holiday Monday here at Unique Property Bulletin otherwise we would call Mark. If anyone does find out about the current status of this haven for hops home, please let us know, and we can update fellow readers. Thanks.


[Click the little circles under the main photo to see more photographs]