The sale of the The Manor House, Stoke Poges
In the blog that preceded “The Steeple Times,” Matthew Steeples took a look at The Manor House at Stoke Poges in March 2012. It’s still on the market at £13,500,000 and though the price has yet to be cut, there has been uproar about revelations that the former owners, South Buckinghamshire District Council, sold the freehold and a sculpture by John Deare for just £300,000. A link to the May 2012 “Bucks Free Press” article about this is included at the end of this article. What a Carry On!
Estate agents particulars are funny things. Normally gushing with nonsense such as “prestigious,” “luxurious” and “architect designed,” property agents rarely miss a trick when it comes to selling historical and personality related peculiarities.
I was therefore somewhat perplexed that the brochure for The Manor House at Stoke Poges in Buckinghamshire didn’t contain reference to its appearance in the 1974 classic Carry on Dick.
Agents Savills instead opted to gush about the house’s previous owners, who numbered Francis Hastings, second Earl of Huntingdon, Sir Edward Coke and Thomas Penn, son of William Penn, founder of Pennsylvania. The brochure also goes to the lengths of describing visitors who have included Queen Elizabeth I, Charles I and Sir Thomas Gray and points out that Sir Edwin Landseer used The Manor House as a studio whilst painting his most famous work, The Monarch of the Glen, in 1851. The filming of For Your Eyes Only and Bridget Jones’ Diary in the adjoining Stoke Park also get mention but Savills utterly neglect the starring role of the building as the home of the Reverend Flasher, played by Sid James, in Carry on Dick. Plainly “Big Dick” is not someone they wish this £13,500,000 house to be associated with.
The Manor House is now a quarter of its original size as, on his return from America, Thomas Penn decided the house too dilapidated for his own occupation. He commissioned James Wyatt to build him the new mansion that is now Stoke Park Club in the 1790s and demolished the majority of The Manor House.
In 1911, shortly after the Stoke Park golf course was laid out, further refurbishments were carried out that included the creation of the current Great Hall from the former kitchen, the introduction of bay windows and a new grand staircase.
In 2010, Comer Homes acquired The Manor House and brought it into the 21st century. The 11,227 square foot main house and 7,966 square foot of guest and leisure accommodation were completely renovated and such things as multi-zoned, multi-sourced entertainment systems, CAT5 cabling and underfloor heating installed.
Just 35 minutes drive from Mayfair and now looking somewhat like a hotel out of the Mr & Mrs Smith guide, The Manor House is an extremely manageable country home as it stands in just 10 acres of grounds. It will no doubt have huge appeal to a popstar, Euromillions winner or Russian oligarch. When viewing, however, they just better not mention “Big Dick” as no doubt soon the agent will have had “enough of it!”
For more information on The Manor House, Park Road, Stoke Poges, Slough, Buckinghamshire, SL2 4PG contact Nick Ingle of Savills Beaconsfield on +44 (0) 1494 73152 or download a PDF brochure from: http://residentialsearch.savills.co.uk/property-detail/311852
To see more images of The Manor House, Stoke Poges from when it was in Carry on Dick, go to: http://www.thewhippitinn.com/carry_on_film_locations/carry_on_dick
View the trailer for Carry on Dick at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8lk0NaWsbko
To read the Bucks Free Press article about The Manor House and the £300,000 freehold sale, go to: http://www.bucksfreepress.co.uk/news/9701227._Why_was_historic_home_sold_for_so_little__/