Wentworth Woodhouse sold to Hong Kong investment group

THE borough’s grandest stately home — Wentworth Woodhouse — has been sold to a Hong Kong-based investment group.

The Buckingham Palace-dwarfing former seat of the Fitzwilliam family has been sold, subject to contract, by its current owners, the Newbold family, according to Savills Estate Agents.

Several interested parties have viewed the 365-room, Grade I listed property since it was put up for sale, for offers in the region of £8 million, in May.

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But the Lake House Group anounced its purchase on Saturday (7).

A spokesman for the Group said it was "delighted to be involved with the purchase".

"It is our hope that we can work with some of the organisations which have also shown an interest in the property in order to save and preserve this magnificent historic house".

Wentworth Woodhouse was put up for sale by brothers Giles and Marcus Newbold in May, three weeks after death of their father, 89-year-old former architect Clifford Newbold, who bought the sprawling property for a reported £1.5 million back in 1999.

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A charitable trust, led by Save Britain's Heritage, had hoped to purchase the property and launched a public appeal to raise the neccessary funding.

The trust estimated that £42 million would have to be spent to restore the fabric of the building.

The Georgian mansion, which is open to the public, sits in 82 acres of grounds and the earliest wing of the house was started in 1725.

The Palladian-style east wing has a front that extends for 606ft (184m).

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The interiors of the house are the work of three patrons, the First and Second Marquess of Rockingham and the Fourth Earl Fitzwilliam.

The history of Wentworth Woodhouse and the nearby village of Wentworth is linked with three aristocratic families, the Wentworths, Watsons and Fitzwilliams.