Marle Hall up for auction with bargain basement guide price after decades of helping Warwickshire's children

The site has gathered international attention - perhaps because it has a guide price of just £400,000

Photo: Savills National Auctions.
Photo: Savills National Auctions.

A stunning manor house in North Wales which had served as an outdoor learning centre for generations of Warwickshire's children is going under the hammer - with a bizarrely low guide price.

The Grade II listed building had been owned by Warwickshire County Council since 1971 - providing a space for the county's children to enjoy the outdoors with educational activities.

But in 2020 the council shut the centre because of the pandemic - at the time suggesting that the closure was not permanent.

The Grade II listed cottage comes as part of the sale. Photo: Savills National Auctions.

In December of that year the council's cabinet then proposed shutting the centre permanently.

At the time, campaign group Save Marle Hall pushed for the centre to be preserved and a petition calling on the council to do just that gathered 7,000 signatures.

During the campaign, two senior teachers from Rugby highlighted the 'life-changing' benefit the centre can bring.

In a joint statement, headteacher Jill Vavasour and deputy headteacher Louisa Brown from Knightlow Primary School said: “Marle Hall has, without a shadow of a doubt, changed the lives of generations of our children.

The house retains some beautiful period features. Photo: Savills National Auctions.

"It has taught them so much and given them a chance to see themselves in the most positive light.

"Through fantastic outdoor learning experiences, they have recognised their own strengths and character, developed resilience and fostered an awe-inspiring love for the wonder of the natural world.”

Warwickshire County Council said they considered the opposition to plans carefully.

Then, in August 2021 the county council voted to shut the centre permanently - citing the high cost of ongoing maintenance and a requirement to spend £850,000 on the centre over the next decade.

One of the dormitories. Photo: Savills National Auctions.

And now the historic site is up for auction with a guide price of just £400,000.

Savills, the agent handling the property, said the package comprises the 15-bedroomed Georgian manor and a 3.6 acre which comes with an outbuilding, Grade II listed cottage and mobile classroom.

There is scope to alter use of the building, the agent adds.

The advert (which can be seen at www.rightmove.co.uk/properties/119153981#/?channel=COM_BUY) appears to have captivated the press across Britain and abroad - even being featured in the New York Post.