May 19, 2024


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U.K. Country House Blends New Construction on a Historic Site


A modern U.K. country home sited on nearly 13 acres of mature gardens has hit the market for £7.75 million (US$9.73 million).

Alderwood House, as it is known, is located in Penshurst, and has been carved out of the nearby Redleaf Estate, which dates to the 16th century, according to listing agent Edward Rook of Knight Frank. The property was listed at the end of May.

“What stands out about this house is that it’s a very rare combination of a modern house with modern technology that’s built in a traditional style but within a mature garden,” he said. “There are wonderful cedar trees and walled gardens that have the history that comes with having been part of a bigger estate.”

The owners paid £4 million for the property in 2014, according to Her Majesty’s Land Registry. At the time, the 6,700-square-foot residence was essentially a shell built by a developer who was unable to complete it, Mr. Rook said. The couple, who were unavailable for comment, then installed a slate of modern amenities and set about revitalizing the gardens. 

“It’s functionally brilliant, not just the layout but the technology,” Mr. Rook said. “They’ve added everything that makes living easy.”

The home is surrounded by mature gardens.

Knight Frank

The home has five en-suite bedrooms; several reception rooms with high ceilings and stone fireplaces; a chef’s kitchen with a larder, high-end appliances and access to the rear garden terrace; and a 600-bottle wine cellar, according to the listing. A guest cottage with a private patio provides two additional bedrooms. 

Eco-friendly amenities include a solar-panel system with a battery backup, energy efficient air-source heating and recycled water irrigation systems. The home is also wired with smart-home technology, and there’s a home theater with a Sony cinema projector with seven speakers.

Outside, the gardens are full of specimen trees and shrubs, water features, a vegetable garden, a greenhouse and a pond, plus several dining areas and an outdoor kitchen, the listing said. A woodland extends beyond the formal gardens, and there’s a leisure complex with a gym and a heated swimming pool.

It benefits from its location, as well, according to Mr. Rook. 

“Penshurst is one of the best villages in West Kent, not only for its schools, but also for its access to London,” he said, adding that it’s about a 30-minute train ride to the city. “Schools are the top priority for country house buyers now.” 


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