Always dreamed of living in a castle, but unable to come up with the cash required?
Then here’s the next best thing, the East Lodge at Castle Grant near Grantown on Spey.
Owners of the castle in the 19th century, the Earl of Seafield and his family, like lots of well-heeled families, were not short of luxury in their lives.
However, few in that bracket could boast about having their own railway station at the gates to their estate.
The station, East Lodge, was built around 1863 by the Inverness and Perth Junction Railway Company in acknowledgement of the great facilities given by the Earl in the building of the railway through his estate.
Locally, the railway halt was referred to as Lady Catherine’s Halt, although how it became known as this remains a mystery since it is not a name which features in the Grant dynasty.
The lodge provided a means by which the Seafields could transfer directly from the train into the building, then downstairs to where their carriage would await, which meant not having to mix with other passengers.
The A-listed baronial-style brick-built lodge, which is on the market at offers over £335,000, has lovely details such as crow-stepped gables, a drum tower and turrets, and while it’s undergone significant refurbishment to make it a comfortable, family home, it retains many original features and is a house full of charm and quirky features.
It was constructed in the grounds of Castle Grant, which was, until recently, owned by former Rangers owner Craig Whyte.
The property is accessed via a magnificent, tall round-headed ashlar granite archway with shaped wallhead and crenelated bartizans corbelled out each side as well as a coat of arms in the centre, all of which let visitors immediately know they’re about to enter a rather special home.
A stone stairway leads to the first-floor front door, however the ground floor is easily accessed via the gardens at the side which lead to the back door of the property.
The entrance vestibule leads to the hallway, accessed via a leaded glass door.room with turret room. There is a storage cupboard, shower room and a sitting room with turretroom. The kitchen and dining area are open plan and this has created a relaxing, bright and airy living space with ample room for entertaining guests. The kitchen is fitted with quality oak wall and base units, floor tiles, granite worktops and a Belfast sink, whilst the dining area has hardwood flooring and space for a large table and chairs.
A staircase from here leads to the first floor and a large hallway. There are two bedrooms on this level. The master bedroom is a good size and comes complete with wood panelling, built-in storage facilities, an en-suite bathroom and separate WC.
The second double bedroom also benefits from an en suite shower room. The staircase leads to the second floor where a gallery study/office area has been created in the large landing. This leads to an impressive formal sitting room which has a feature fireplace and sitting room which has a feature fireplace and inset fire, raised skirtings and ceiling coving. A door leading from this room leads to the turret and directly on to the former railway halt. There is a further double bedroom and shower room on this level.
Outside, the house sits in beautifully landscaped garden grounds which feature lawns, shrubs, plants, trees and raised beds. There is a bridge over a small burn leading to a children’s play area which includes a greenhouse and garden shed.
A large part of the garden has been paved and there are several places for sitting outside and admiring the countryside and wildlife. There is ample parking to the side as well as a further area next to the entrance archway.
The house sits within the Cairngorms National Park and enjoys lovely open views over the local countryside and beyond and is around a mile and a half from the fine Georgian town of Grantown on Spey which is currently celebrating its 250th anniversary.
Kevin Maley, of Strutt and Parker’s Inverness office, said: “Having completed the successful sale of Castle Grant last year, it is good to be now selling this impressive lodge. It has a certain grandeur, yet is also a very nice family home without the running costs of a castle.”
Contact: Strutt and Parker on 01463 719171.