7 bedroom House - Detached for sale
- Romantic Country House
- Grade II Listed
- Integral Flat
- Stable Cottage
- Beautiful Gardens
- 49 Acres
St. Nicholas is an impressive Grade II Listed country house situated on the fringe of the historic and picturesque market town of Richmond, North Yorkshire. Crowned by its monumental Norman Castle and possessing the oldest working playhouse in the country, the Georgian Theatre Royal, Richmond provides a wide range of local amenities including two cinema screens and appealing artisan shops in the restored old Station beside the River Swale. There are two secondary schools: Richmond School and St Francis Xavier School, which is a slightly smaller comprehensive for boys and girls aged 11–16. Trains to London are from Darlington ?13 miles? and takes approximately 2 hours 20 minutes. The A1 is 5 miles east providing links to the country’s motorway network. Leeds Bradford and Newcastle airports are approximately 50 miles away.
St Nicholas was founded as a mediaeval Hospital by 1172 and remained as a Crown property, with a chapel and chantry, until it was sold by Queen Elizabeth I in about 1585, when its religious character was finally lost, and it was largely rebuilt. Thereafter in private ownership and purchased in 1813 by the Dundas family? later to become the Marquises of Zetland? who directed restoration and improvements to be carried out by Ignatius Bonomi. The Hon Robert ‘Bobbie’ James, an eminent gardener and plantsman, moved to St Nicholas in 1901 and made further additions to the house well into the 20th century. He began laying out the gardens in 1905 and they remain as he planned to this day. St Nicholas is included in English Heritage’s official Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest. After his death in 1960, Robert James’s widow, Lady Serena lived here until her death in 2000 in her one hundredth year. The current owners bought the property in 2001.
St Nicholas is approached off Maison Dieu (B5271) through stone pillared electric gates to a gravelled forecourt at the front of the house. It enjoys an elevated setting, with views across the pastures to the ruins of Easby Abbey and the River Swale and to the Hambleton Hills beyond. Steps ascend from the forecourt to an arched covered entrance.
The front door opens to the main reception hall with an open fireplace. Leading from the hall to the south, off the inner hall are two large reception rooms; the drawing room is a particularly fine room with wooden strip floor and wonderful views over the gardens and parkland and the sitting room is a generous family room with a log burner, fitted bookshelves and door to the garden. From the north side of the hall is the well-proportioned dining room which leads to the servery and on to the kitchen/ breakfast room with a four-oven Aga. Leading from the kitchen are the scullery and pantry. The servery also accesses a back porch area leading to the old school rooms. The old school rooms are now used as stores and an office. Below the house are traditional vaulted wine cellars with original wine bins. The bedroom accommodation at St Nicholas is reached via the main staircase from the inner hall. The bedrooms consist of the master bedroom suite with further bedroom, a guest
bedroom suite, 3 further bedrooms and a potential further single bedroom, currently used as a storeroom and 3 family bathrooms. A large library with craftsman-built bookcases and parquet floor features far-reaching views to the east. To one end of the house is an integral flat consisting of a generously proportioned sitting room, kitchen, 2 bedrooms and bathroom.
The gardens belonging to St Nicholas are perhaps its most notable feature and have been featured in ‘Country Life’ in 1936 and 2013. The gardens consist of a series of compartments laid out and planted from 1905 by the Hon. Robert ‘Bobbie’ James. Today the gardens are being sensitively resurrected and replanted in the spirit of their founder. About 7 acres, amongst the Garden Compartments are the Formal Gardens bounded by topiary hedges, the Cottage Garden, the Rock Garden, Potager, Herb Garden and splendid Long Borders. The gardens were given a Grade II listed status and are occasionally open to the public. The remaining land at St Nicholas consists of parkland that lies beyond the garden to the east and two further pasture fields amounting to about 36 acres and Clink Bank wood that lies beyond the garden fence.
Situated behind the house and accessed via a walkway from the north corner of the kitchen courtyard is Stable Cottage. Stable Cottage is a 2 bedroom property having a sitting room and kitchen/breakfast room on the ground floor. Adjoined and adjacent to the cottage is the old coach house and garaging. The Stable Cottage has its own separate driveway.