“Grand” Grade II* listed Midlands manor for sale for just £350,000; it comes with a 49-seat cinema and several unexpected catches
Where there’s muck, there’s money and a late 18th century Midlands manor house currently for sale for just £350,000 ($451,000, €402,000 or درهم1.65 million) provides an example of the tale of the progress and decline of industrial wealth in once Great Britain.
Built in 1757 for a family of Black Country industrialists, Wordsley Manor in Wordsley, near Stourbridge has been owned by the Firmstone family and their relatives since around 1850. A red brick built, four floor “small mansion” that extends to 7,464 square foot in total, the building has been Grade II* listed since 1976 and was expanded in the 19th century with the addition of two service wings.
Comprising of 3 reception rooms, 7 cellar rooms, 4 bedrooms and just 1 bathroom, dilapidated Wordsley Manor is – giving explanation for its extremely low asking price – in need of complete renovation. It comes, however, with an unexpected bonus: Where bedrooms previously existed on its second floor, there is currently an art studio and a quirky 49-seat cinema with a Christie organ, box office and projection and switch rooms.
Architect Christopher Firmstone and wife Joan have been occupants of Wordsley since inheriting it in 1991. They have attempted to maintain the house but in 2011, Mr Firmstone told the Birmingham Mail:
“I took it on and sorted it out as best I could. Most people would have run a mile, but I had a real sense of attachment to it [he spent his childhood there also]”.
“I spent a bit more than I could afford on it, but I was unable to do everything that needed doing”.
In 2013, the couple followed in the footsteps of relatives who had sold off much of the surrounding land for housing in the mid 20th century and agreed a deal with a firm of developers named David Alexander Homes. In exchange for yet another parcel of the former estate’s grounds – that was subsequently marketed rather cheesily as a residential complex named “To the Manor Bourne” – a £400,000 ($512,000, €460,000 or درهم1.88 million) payment is to be made towards the restoration of Wordsley Manor.
In their sales brochure, agents The Lee, Shaw Partnership state: “Best and final offers must be made for Wordsley Manor by 5.30pm on Tuesday 27th June”. They add: “Only cash purchasers” need apply.