A Fire Sale

A Fire Sale – Parnham House, Beaminster, Dorset, DT8 3LZ, United Kingdom – For sale for £3 million ($3.8 million, €3.3 million or درهم13.8 million) through Sanderson Weatherall; former home of the late Michael and Emma Treichl.

Repossessed Grade I listed Dorset mansion once worth circa £15 million for sale for £3 million; the catch? It’s burnt to the ground


An “exceptionally important,” Grade I listed, 38,000 square foot, 16th century country house in Dorset with 131.6 acres for just £3 million is certainly something that sounds like a bargain. Sadly, however, Parnham House, near Beaminster comes with a catch: it burnt to the ground in April 2017 and doesn’t even have a roof.


Remodeled by the architect John Nash in 1810 and subject to a costly renovation – sadly now obviously gone – since being bought by the late financier Michael Treichl and his wife Emma in 2001 for £4 million, Parnham House has variously been a family home, was requisitioned during World War II by American troops and was the School for Craftmanship in Wood from 1976 to 2001.


Michael and Emma Treichl
The front elevation of Parnham House before the fire
The front elevation of Parnham House after the fire
The fire in full force
The aftermath


Now listed on the Heritage at Risk Register and likely to cost millions to restore, Parnham House’s destruction came about as a result of an arson attack on the property. The wealthy financier Treichl, who subsequently strangely left just £10,000 in assets in his will after drowning himself on Lake Geneva in June 2017. He is said to have suffered severe depression and possibly suffered catastrophic losses after betting on Brexit.


Offered for sale by Sanderson Weatherall, the estate also includes an undamaged dower house, an undamaged cottage and equestrian facilities. In addition there is a mature park, formal gardens, a lake, walled gardens, a deer park, a tennis court, a bowling green, a swimming pool, fields, woodland and a stream.


Parnham House – The Numbers


2018 – For sale for £3 million ($3.8 million, €3.3 million or درهم13.8 million).


2017 – Said to be worth £15 million ($18.8 million, €16.6 million or درهم69.1 million).


2001 – Sold to Michael and Emma Treichl for £4 million ($5 million, €4.4 million or درهم18.4 million).


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  1. Anyone who’d pay £3m for this dump is insane!!!!!!!!!!! It’s not worth 50p!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Wrecking ball required ——– urgently!!!!!!!!!! Insanity, madness, loopy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Send in the JCBs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • He was the only person questioned and the police claimed they had no interest in pursuing others (if that gives indication).

  2. @author

    interesting indeed; I often read your stories because they are written in colourful English, which helps me improve my own English skills; however I do not understand a thing or two in the article:
    i) doesn’t burnt-to-the-ground mean that there is nothing left? I can still some nice walls standing? 🙂
    ii) did this chap Reichl drown himself on Lake Geneva, e.g. in a pool of his summer residence there, or in Lake Geneva itself?
    iii) I can’t read from the story that Mr Reichl was the arsonist. Am I wrong? Why does Robert Kay above comment that the owner desecrated history? How? By drowning himself?
    iv) If Mr. Reichle bet on Brexit, then why did he suffer catastrophic losses? You will get the Brexit, won’t you?

    • 1. There are some walls left (some collapsed) but no interior so yes, it did effectively burn to the ground.
      2. Mr Treichl drowned himself on the lake.
      3. Mr Treichl was the only person questioned and the police claimed they had no interest in pursuing others (if that gives indication).
      4. Some bet on Brexit happening, others bet the other way. I do not believe Brexit will happen but those that play the markets can win or lose either way.

  3. What an absolute bargain at that price, okay the main pad is a burnt out shell, but you still have the acreage and some buildings untouched. I think this is a steal at that price and should be saved. Not being a property professional of course.

  4. I am so sad that this lovely house was so mutilated. I was told during a private visit that President Eisenhower and a few other notables at the latter end of WW2 met here to discuss the Beach landings which involved the American troops leaving from Weymouth. There were quite few billeted in and around South-West Dorset whilst these and several British troops also on billet were mustering for the Big push. I never see this published anywhere but with this in mind could not the Americans be made aware of this really notable and sad situation?


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