Unique Property Bulletin 3 November 2013

Online Edition Number 100

It doesn’t seem like 5 minutes ago that we transferred the old paper version of Unique Property Bulletin to the online format. But here we are, at the 100th electronic edition. The biggest delight has been the number of new friends and kindred eccentrics met along this virtual road. Almost speed dating on steroids. The old paper Bulletin started out with a couple of hundred copies printed and we thought it was doing well when it eventually burst through the 1,000 mark.

UPB 14 Paper Version

Paper Format Version: Unique Property Bulletin

The original Unique Property Bulletin began as a small scale creation that is typical of what appears in the middle of ‘Guest Publication’ round on Have I Got News_for_You . Usually something like Toenail Clippings Weekly or Tarmac Appreciation News.

The gentle climb of the paper Unique Property Bulletin to the 3,000 peak was cause for mild celebration. But a curious thing happened. It was impossible to resist the buildings being featured, so the emphasis moved from writing about unusual property, to real life adventures with the actual bricks and mortar structures. Buying, living in, and working on these fabulous places. The Bulletin has always been around, but sort of went off the boil in favour of enjoying some of the buildings featured. That was until November 2011 when we finally got to grips with basic internet website protocols. A revitalised Unique Property Bulletin has now come about. By the way, anyone who says the word “easy” and “computer” in the same sentence should be hung, drawn and quartered. Seriously.

Mustn’t complain though. Not a bit of it. Back in November 2011 we were delighted to hit a 300 readership level in week two, then 952 readers by online edition four. The 3,000 mark was breached early in 2012 and the thing is almost at 30,000 viewers at week 100 here during November 2013. Much appreciation from this end of the keyboard to the wonderful folk who put up with our sin of mangling the English language on a regular basis. More thanks too, to the decent and fine people who email with news to share and often end up as firm friends.

Old Coastguard Station

Old Island Coastguard Station – Bulletin Birthplace (c) 1987 Russ McLean

Much like it was, way back in 1987 on a small island when someone came up to the old coastguard station whilst we were renovating it and asked directions as they had taken a wrong turn when landing. We ended up having a coffee and 25 odd years later are still friends. That was the real world. It is a pleasant surprise to know the physical side of unique property and these Bulletins translate well to the electronic virtual world as well, and has happened many times over these past 100 electonic editions.

For Unique Readers

Just before signing off this brief intro., to the 100th online edition of Unique Property Bulletin, I would like to mention the use of older online Bulletins as a research source for our readers. Often properties featured come up for sale again – even after they appear to have gone off the market and listed as being sold. Sometimes, those clued up will write a courtesy letter to the owner of one of our featured properties asking for the heads-up if that property comes up for sale again. We know that works because we have seen sales result with happy sellers and delighted buyers. So it is worth recommending readers use the Bulletin to the full. Not just the current online main site, but we archive the older versions at…

Unique Property Bulletin Archive Website

and a sample of archived information ….

Bulletin Archives

One way or another, we hope to share details of these amazing places to live, and wish all the readers of Unique Property Bulletin well in finding that very special place to call home. Not just an ordinary dwelling but a truly unique home.

Ailsa Craig Island 100th Edition

Ailsa Craig Island – From Virtual To Real Life (c) 2011 Russ McLean

Lastly, and from the heart, a big thankyou to all of the folk who doggedly return to this website each week to catch up with this fairly obscure publication. It is great fun to contribute to the Bulletin each week, but that is only the half of it. The friends met along the way, the experiences and unusual stories of unique properties from fellow travellers just completes the whole thing and makes the effort absolutely enjoyable.

Thankyou and kindest regards,

Russ McLean. Aged 100.

Unique Property Bulletin.


Arts & Crafts Vernacular

 Red House 1 RSZ

The Red House (c) 2013 Owners Collection/Mackenzie & Cormack

Arts & Crafts was, and is, a specific architectural vernacular. This style has been explored no less by Kirstie and Phil ….

Channel 4 – Arts & Crafts Building Design

Popular with it’s own base of devotees. For example …

Princes Foundation – Arts & Crafts House

With a certain style …

Arts & Crafts – Architectural Vernacular

Here for sale we have not just a Arts & Craft design building, but one with a further and truly unique octagonal proposed extension. Here is the draft plan drawing of the suggested addition …

Red House Plan Proposal RSZ

The Red House – Proposed Octaganol Addition (c) 2013 Owner’s Architect

The architect has also provided a visual impression of what this proposed addition to the Arts & Crafts building may look like…

Red House 2 RSZ

 The Red House (c) 2013 Owners Collection/Mackenzie & Cormack

The proposed architectural addition is currently in concept form, but we would be delighted to make the introduction to the designer of this so that Bulletin readers who like this one can explore the ideas further. Just pop an email across to us and we shall put you in touch Contact Page.

Red House 5 Interior Gems (c) 2013 Owners Collection/Mackenzie & Cormack

Location: The Red House, Tower Street, Tain, IV19 1DY.

Tenure: Feuhold [Scottish Freehold Equivalent].

Guide: £95,000.

Contact Mackenzie & Cormack Solicitors Tel: 01862 892046. Please can you help Unique Property Bulletin stay free to use by letting the estate agent/owner know that you found their property on the Unique Property Bulletin website. Thankyou.

Online Brochure ….



Lappa Valley Railway

Lappa Valley Rod Allday RSZ

Lappa Valley Steam Railway, Cornwall (c) 2013 Rod Allday

This is a real treat for railway devotees. There is also accommodation, but is currently designated for holiday-makers. Given the whole site is about 60 acres, and added to which it is an important and historic feature of the area, if any readers are keenly interested and looking for a unique lifestyle change, it may be a possibility to seek planning permission for a modest owner occupied residential dwelling to be built in a quiet corner of this vast 60 acre site.

 Lappa Valley 7

Unique Railway With Unique Buildings (c) 2013 Lappa Valley Railway Co., Ltd.

It says a great deal that the current ownership of the Lappa Valley Railway has continued for over 40 years. There can be fewer styles of life where making people happy and gifting enjoyment are within the DNA of a livelihood. The longevity of this company, and the simple and abundant smiles all round are testimony to that endeavour. With the retirement of the current proprietors, the new owners, somewhere out there – possibly reading this – may be lucky enough to have a similar wonderful way of life.

 Lappa Valley 4 Smiles RSZ

 Smiles From The Footplate – Heartlifting (c) 2013 Lappa Valley Railway Co., Ltd.

Owner’s Narrative: Established 1974. Circa 60 acre site (part freehold, mainly leasehold). Situated in beautiful setting – a veritable oasis of wildlife conservation! Wide range of amenities including adventure playground, brick-path maze, boating lake, crazy golf, pedal & electric car tracks, etc. plus café and gift shop. Also incorporates historic mine engine house (with visitor viewing platform) and its associated chimney.

 Lappa Valley 5 RSZ

Lappa Valley – Old Forge – Coffee Time (c) 2013 Lappa Valley Railway Co., Ltd.

Separately accessed 9 hole golf course (presently unused). Seasonal operation plus 8 days or so of “Santa Specials”. Turnover in excess of £600,000 in financial year ending 31st October 2013 (compared with £521,000 in previous year). Visitor numbers (at 56,000) up 17% on previous year (with a record August up 28%). Newly created 2 bedroom holiday flat (above ticket office at Benny Halt Station) which produced additional £8,000 income during the 2013 season. Considerable and genuine scope further site/business development. Excellent management and staff. Retirement sale (owners not involved in business operation).

 Lappa Valley Station Flat RSZ

Lappa Valley Steam Railway, Cornwall (c) 2013 Lappa Valley Railway Co., Ltd.

Lots of information and photographs on the owner’s website ..


Happy 40th Anniversary by the way!

Plus Details of the accommodation …


Lappa Valley Main Layout Poster RSZ

An Illustration Of 60 Railway Acres (c) 2013 Lappa Valley Railway Co., Ltd.

Location: Lappa Valley Steam Railway, St. Newlyn East, Newquay, Cornwall, TR8 5LX.

Tenure: Part Freehold – Remainder Long Leasehold.

Guide: £500,000

Contact Via: Lappa Valley Railway Enquiry Form

Please can readers help the Unique Property Bulletin stay free to use by letting the estate agent/owner/auctioneer know that you found their property on the Unique Property Bulletin website. Thankyou.

Online Brochure ….



Unique Property Competition

Sorry, last month’s £100 prize has skint our modest competition fund. This month we have a curious prize. It is an old pound note. Back in the day when this was real pocket money, not a little brass type of coin! It may not be of the same value as last month, but the main point here is the ‘just for fun’ element. So here is our modest prize for November 2013 …

Unique Property Bulletin Prize

Memories ! = The November Prize = Just for Fun

It may well be a stretch to say this is lucky pound note. But if you are like us and believe in luck – don’t walk under ladders/one good turn deserves another sort of thing, then perhaps consider putting this old pound in a small picture frame and pop it onto your desk. We were given a similar vintage ten shilling note by a very dear friend many years ago, and it has brought an extraordinary amount of good luck. So who knows – the above may bring you twice as much luck. Two ten bob notes add up to an old pound. Anyways here is the clue…

Competition Hint – Recent Nuclear Postcode ?

Free to enter. Just let us know your guess of who you think the above Competition Hint refers to? Please email your entry to us by 30th November 2013. You may need to check out a previous edition or other elements of the Unique Property Bulletin to understand the clue a little better.

Email free entries to:-

Unique Property Bulletin Competition Entry Contact Page


Gone Fishing

Esthwaite Water Peter Turner

Lake at Esthwaite Water, Cumbria (c) 2013 Peter Turner

A little unusual but hey, that is what this Bulletin is all about. At the recommendation of a kind reader, we went fishing – on Ebay. This is one of the fabulous things that we caught – A BIG LAKE !

Esthwaite Water Building David Long

Lake and Boat House, Esthwaite Water, Cumbria (c) 2013 David Long

The owner has also created a dedicated website with a host of information …


So far on Ebay 17,952 folk have visited the owner’s Ebay Esthwaite Lake for sale page. There does seem to be an evident demand by people who desire to literally buy the water view!

Lake For Sale 1 RSZ

Boats & Tall Fishing Stories Included (c) 2013 N. Woodhouse

Owner’s Narrative: A once in a lifetime opportunity to acquire an assignable lease on the largest privately owned lake in the Lake District.

A significant 280 acre lake in the heart of the Lake District with well established leisure businesses offering a shop, café, boating, fishing, and visitor attraction. Once in a lifetime opportunity to acquire an assignable lease on the largest privately owned lake in the Lake District.It is the largest stocked fishing lake in The North West region, with significant winter trading. Home to Jeremy Fisher, with a licensed Beatrix Potter nature trail, and huge potential to capitalise on the well established Beatrix Potter market which comes to Hawkshead and Near Sawrey, 500 metres away.Wild life boat safaris bring the visitor close to the resident osprey.

Lake For Sale Boat House

Inside The Boat House, Esthwaite Water, Cumbria (c) 2013 N. Woodhouse

Location: Lake and Boat House, Esthwaite Water, Hawkeshead, Ambleside, Cumbria, LA22 0QF.

Tenure: Long Leasehold.

Guide: £300,000

Contact The Owner: Mr Woodhouse via: Esthwaite Lake Contact Page

Please can readers help the Unique Property Bulletin stay free to use by letting the owner know that you found their lake property and buildings on the Unique Property Bulletin website. Thankyou.

Online Details ….





Caught Another Lake 125,000 Pounder!

 Lake 1

Lincolnshire Log Cabin & Lake (c) 2013 Mr P. Knight

Ebay seems to have a few very popular stretches of waterside land and lakes for sale. Here we caught another one, plus a cabin.

The cabin is set in approximately half an acre with around 1 acre of your very own lake included. Bliss.

 Lake 2

Log Cabin – Interior Quite Nice Too (c) 2013 Mr P. Knight

Location: Lincolnshire Log Cabin & Lake – Contact Buyer For Location

Tenure: Freehold.

Guide: £125,000

Contact The Owner Directly – Text/Phone: 07966466681. Please can readers help the Unique Property Bulletin stay free to use by letting the log cabin and lake owner know that you found their property on the Unique Property Bulletin website. Thankyou.

Online Brochure ….





Caught A Chapel

Chapel L1

Wesleyan Chapel, New York, Lincoln (c) 2013 Owner’s Collection

Ebay is being very good to us this week. We continued our property fishing trip and came across a former chapel in New York – Not the USA New York, but the one in Lincoln, Old Blighty.

Description: Wesleyan Chapel for residential conversion. Comes complete with full detailed Planning Permission and Building Regulations approval for the Chapel Conversion into 1 or 2 dwellings.

Also has an Attached Annex – The School House which is now converted. This is the single storey buildings. Open plan living area with feature hand built kitchen / sitting room 7m x 7.5m. Two bedrooms; bathroom; utility room; boot room; entrance vestibule.

The School House is ideal to live in whilst converting the Chapel into the Main Residence.

 Chapel L3

Feature Filled Interior (c) 2013 Owner’s Collection

This Beautiful Chapel has presence at the head of the village. Sits on approximately 1/4 acre of land laid to grass. Plenty of room for gardens / parking. Also has planning permission for a character three car garage. External windows doors and rainwater goods are all repaired and refurbished.

This is an opportunity to create that dream home within this fine building. With a potential approx 4,000 square feet of convertible floor space within the Chapel Building. Not Listed. No Burials. No Restrictions. All planning permissions in place. Open country views and only three miles for a range of facilities.

 Chapel L5

Old School Annexe – Comforts and Joy (c) 2013 Owner’s Collection

Location: Wesleyan Chapel, Langrick Road, New York, Lincoln, LN4 4YD

Tenure: Freehold.

Guide: £270,500

Contact The Owner Directly – Tel: 07949 499 388. Please can readers help the Unique Property Bulletin stay free to use by letting the owner know that you found their former church property on the Unique Property Bulletin website. Thankyou.

Online Brochure ….



Caught A Court

Court 1 RSZ

Southport Magistrates Court, Southport (c) 2013 Pugh & Co.

The last for this 100th issue’s fishing trip topic. This time – and apologies for torturing the theme – we have caught a court. This one is coming up for auction and located in the town centre. A former magistrates court of approximately 2,478.69 sq m (26,681 sq ft) with development potential. For sure this is a vast amount of building for the price being sought

Auctioneer’s Narrative: The property is situated within Southport Town Centre on Albert Road (A565) within close proximity to the junction with Lord Street. It lies between the newly developed fire station and the police station. Other surrounding uses include retail, leisure and residential. Southport lies approximately 10 miles north west of Junction 3 of the M58 motorway and is accessed via the A570 and approximately 17 miles north of Liverpool city centre.

Description: A substantial three storey semi-detached property split over ground, first and second floor accommodation. The building and site are considered suitable for a variety of uses or redevelopment subject to gaining the necessary planning consents.

Court 2 RSZ

Nice Wood Panelling – But Dubious Glass Features (c) 2013 Pugh & Co.


Ground Floor: Main Reception Area and Associated Interview Rooms.

First Floor: Open Plan Waiting Area, Three Main Courtrooms and a number of compartmentalised Offices arranged around the perimeter of the building, Male, Female and Disabled Toilet Facilities.

Total Gross Internal Area: 2,478.69 sq m (26,681 sq ft).

Outside: Car parking to the front of the building.

Site Area: Approximately 0.21 Hectares (0.52 Acres).

 Court 2

Gallery Section – Could Be Useful (c) 2013 Pugh & Co.

Tenure: Freehold.

Guide: £200,000 to £250,000 – Auction Lot 68 – 3rd December 2013. Always remember FTSAA – Failed To Sell At Auction. This means if you come across this listing after the auction, it is always worth checking if the lot actually sold. If it didn’t, then you may be in for a good bargain.

Contact Pugh Agencies Tel: 0844 2 722444. Please can readers help the Unique Property Bulletin stay free to use by letting the auctioneer know that you found their property on the Unique Property Bulletin website. Thankyou.

Online Brochure ….



Unique Property Auctions

A big thankyou to those readers who responded to our request for feedback about a new “Unique Property Auction” joint venture by the Bulletin with one of the major UK auction houses being a way to help keep this website going. The modest shared commission from this venture being utilised to employ a dedicated IT person with journalistic skills. This will enable the volunteers at Unique Property Bulletin to give much more time in researching, locating and featuring unusual properties. It will also secure the long the term future of this website. Most importantly it will keep our core ethos intact:

This site shall remain free for all readers. The Bulletin will still be run on a not-for-profit and break-even basis. It will also have a permanent member of staff with the required IT skills and additional capabilities to keep the website online. Whilst also keeping the volunteer and sharing element.

The addition of a modest split income form Unique Property Auctions will mean that all the costs in keeping this website – and these are significantly higher than we had expected – are covered from the auction side of things.

Plus a Unique Property Auction facility is a useful thing to consider for those readers who are looking to sell their unusual building – an expeditious sales route for their property with a definitive outcome one way or another at the fall of the auctioneer’s hammer.

We are just starting out on this, but any news will be posted here ..


Old Steading

An Actual Example: One Of Our Own Unique Properties Sold At Auction.

We Have Found Auctions Really Useful. Hopefully You May Too.

Kindest regards,

Unique Property Bulletin Team

Click Here To Contact Us


Nuclear Bunker Offers In By Date

UKWMO Wadhurst 1 RSZ

UKWMO/ROC Bunker, Wadhurst, East Sussex (c) 2013 Owner’s Collection

This just in – the owner of the Underground Nuclear Bunker – ROC / UKWMO Post has asked if anyone who has an interest in the property ….


kindly email their best offer to him on or before 10th November 2013.

The owner of UKWMO Ticehurst – Matthew – can be contacted at….


Please replace “[at]” with “@” to help avoid spam robots hoovering up emails.

If readers have any technical problems contacting Matthew, they are welcome to use our own web contact page as a conduit….


No prices or offers via this secondary protocol please. Just your email and perhaps a phone number, and we shall pass that onto Matthew for him to discuss offers etc., with you directly.

Very best wishes.

Unique Property Bulletin Team.


Architecturally Unique

St Breward 1

Ronald Sim Design – St. Breward, Cornwall (c) 2013 The Modern House Co.

This property presents a remarkable opportunity to purchase a distinguished Mid-Century modern building in an outstanding rural setting. Set in approximately 3 acres of grounds, with river frontage and fine views, the house was designed in 1961 by the architect Ronald Sims. Now, with some sympathetic updating, it has tremendous potential not least due to the unusually large reception rooms. The house was originally designed to incorporate a small private school and the main reception room is a former school hall.

The property is approached via a private drive lined with mature trees. The entrance hall leads in to the main reception room, a large, light space with full height glazing giving far-reaching views of the surrounding grounds and countryside. The second reception room has a wonderful curved wall at one end. Original features include teak parquet flooring and a beautiful granite fireplace and hearth. Also on the ground floor is a kitchen / dining room, WC and utility room. In the basement there is a large garage / workshop.

St Breward 2

Large Open Plan – Fashionable Again (c) 2013 The Modern House Co.

The first floor features a master bedroom with the same wonderful curved wall as the downstairs reception room and superb views. This bedroom has an en suite bathroom. There are two further bedrooms and a family bathroom on this floor. The landing leads to an extensive roof terrace, also with superb views.

The grounds are significant part of the appeal of the property and Sims has clearly taken into account the wonderful, tranquil setting in his siting and design of the house. Expansive lawns, areas of woodland and a lovely area of river bank, with fishing rights, make up the landscape of the site.

 St Breward 3

Around 3 Acres Of Grounds, Cornwall (c) 2013 The Modern House Co.

The property is on the market for the first time since it was constructed in the 1960s, with the family who owns it having commissioned Ronald Sims on the recommendation of the renowned architect Sir Basil Spence. Sims had just returned to England after period of working and studying in the US which was, at the time, at the forefront of Modern architecture. The prominent chimney and hearth and the long, low horizontal rooflines of the house make it certain that Sims studied the work of Frank Lloyd Wright whilst in America and it is thought that he even may have worked in Lloyd Wright’s office. The desire to integrate buildings into their natural surroundings, something strongly espoused by Lloyd Wright, was a prominent driving force behind the designs of Modern architects at the time, so one can only imagine that Sims would have been thrilled to land a job on such an outstanding rural site.

Location: St. Breward, Bodmin, Cornwall, PL30 4LU.

Tenure: Freehold.

Guide: £645,000

Contact The Modern House Agencies Tel: 020 7704 3504 . Please can readers help the Unique Property Bulletin stay free to use by letting the estate agent know that you found their property on the Unique Property Bulletin website. Thankyou.

Online Brochure ….



Try Before You Buy …..

Old Coastguard Station

Coastguard Station D1

The Old Coastguard Station, Kent (c) 2013 Phillips & Stubbs

The original Unique Property Bulletin was born in a former Coastguard Station 25 years ago. We started this special online 100th edition with a reference and picture of that old, and beloved island coastguard station, so it seems fitting that we end this edition, and our try-before-you-buy element by including a Coastguard Station that is for lease. This one at Dungeness is a very unique place to stay. There are restrictions on occupancy, but it is an interesting building to study. Who knows, you may just end up taking a lease on it and starting something which gives you a vast amount of pleasure over the years.

In closing this issue, a sincere thanks to all the folk who have read, and also the many who have joined in the adventures along the way.

Coastguard Station D2

Neat Lines, Fine View, Neat Abode (c) 2013 Phillips & Stubbs

Agency Narrative: This former Coastguard Tower is located right on the foreshore and is arguably the nearest property to the shoreline across the South East Coast. It sits within the centre of the largest stretch of shingle in the world after Cape Canaveral in Florida. The property is approached via Dungeness Road, taking the left hand turning before you reach the car park of the Power Station. From here you will see the parking area for the property (you can also park outside the property if you wish). Council Tax Band ‘B’. A four storey converted lookout occupying a commanding seafront location on the dramatic, other-worldliness shingle headland of Dungeness with stunning views over the English Channel and desolate, serene landscape of this protected coastline of international conservation importance. Accommodation boasts two double bedrooms, each with terraces overlooking the sea, open plan kitchen / diner and reception room with terrace. Full details on the weblink below.

Coastguard Station D3

Unique Location – As Far As The Eye Can See & Sea (c) 2013 Phillips & Stubbs

Location: The Old Coastguard Station, Dungeness Road, Dungeness, Kent, TN29 9NF

Tenure: Leasehold. – Tenure Frequency Restrictions May Apply.

Guide: £1,450 pcm (long term let only) – Deposit £2,008.

Contact Phillips & Stubbs Tel: 01797 227338. Please can readers help the Unique Property Bulletin stay free to use by letting the estate agent know that you found their property on the Unique Property Bulletin website. Thankyou.

Online Brochure ….