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Issue 4

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South Downs ProperTY (value ÂŁ3.00)

Your local specialist property publication

Residential sales, lettings, developments & commercial proper ties in the South Downs National Park

News: planning & prices

Market Update

Pick of the properties

reflections on

Petworth House


Comment Tradition

Peter Hughes country property

Successfully selling and renting in Petworth and the surrounding Sussex countryside

The traditional adage in the property world used to be ‘Sell in May and go away’. In this fourth issue of the magazine we have headed east along the South Downs and talked to agents in Pulborough and Storrington to find out if this still holds true for them – and how they are faring in the current market conditions. The first issue of each month will carry a profile of a building, an architectural style, a church, an interior, a piece of art, an artefact, or a pursuit which is redolent of the South Downs. On page 2 we focus on Petworth House, the first major property to come within the remit of the National Trust in 1947. This is a house full of treasures and tradition, with works by Turner, Van Dyck, Reynolds, Blake and Grinling Gibbons. And its grounds offer a 700-acre park and Capability Brown landscaping.

• Specialising in period/character properties • Excellent local knowledge • Very experienced team



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South Downs PROPERTY (value £3.00)

• Independent and impartial advice


Residential sales, lettings, developments & commercial proper ties in the South Downs National Park

Nick Keith Editor 01730 235 668

News: planning & prices

Market Update

• The latest marketing technology

Pick of the properties reflections on

Petworth House

Cover: Petworth House, ©NTPL/David Sellman Editor / Publisher

Nick Keith

Assistant Editor

Aimeé Plant

Advertising Manager

Jackie Barnett

Advertising Support

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Graphic Design

Neil Pafford, Dan Vear, Graham Martin


Michel Focard

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01798 344554 1


Petworth in its


Art historian and tour guide Stephen Richardson looks at Petworth, one of the amazing historic houses in the South Downs area In 1947 Petworth House became the first great house to be transferred to the National Trust and in recent years has seen its interiors restored to their glorious early 19th century appearance. It contains the Trust’s finest collection of pictures with numerous works by Van Dyke, Turner, Reynolds and Blake.

The palatial west front, some 320 feet in length, was conceived as the visitor’s first impression of the house prior to being greeted in the magnificent Marble Hall through the then main entrance at its centre. Visitors of rank would be conducted along the enfilade or series of rooms radiating from the hall, either the rooms of parade to the north (including the exquisite Carved Room displaying some was a famous of Grinling Gibbons finest work) or the grand apartment to the south.

Three owners made a particular The 3rd Earl impression on Petworth, and undoubtedly the grandest of them all was Charles patron of contemporary English Seymour, 6th Duke of Somerset (1662In 1750 Petworth passed to the Duke’s great 1748). ‘The Proud Duke’ as he was known, artists such as JMW Turner nephew, Sir Charles Wyndham, 2nd Earl of had a reputation for inordinate pride and and a noted womaniser Egremont (1710-63), a prominent politician pomposity. The builder of Petworth House and collector, who had undertaken grand as we see it today belonged to an age tours to Europe and shared the enthusiasm where social rank was everything, and for French style and culture popular at that time. The 2nd Earl perhaps by good fortune, found himself at the very top. developed an interest in collecting antique sculpture and created a sculpture gallery (the North Gallery) which today contains the His marriage in 1682 to Lady Elizabeth Percy, heiress to the vast largest and most important English collection to survive intact riches of the Earls of Northumberland, brought him ancient in its original setting. He brought ‘Capability’ Brown to Petworth Petworth and the resources to transform it into a grand ducal in the 1750s to landscape the park; and he refurnished the house seat. An energetic patron, benefactor and collector, he was to using the finest English craftsmen of the day. add enthusiastically to Petworth’s already impressive collection of art.



The 2nd Earl died prematurely in 1763 and was succeeded by his son, George O’Brien Wyndham (1751-1837), whose long life witnessed Petworth’s golden age. Hospitable, benevolent and amusing, the 3rd Earl was an innovative farmer, builder of canals and sponsor of schemes to benefit the local community. He was a famous patron of contemporary English artists such as JMW Turner and John Flaxman, and a noted womaniser who fathered 43 children! Turner painted a number of images of Petworth, where he lived for several years, and where up to 20 examples of his work are on display. The 3rd Earl extended the North Gallery to accommodate his burgeoning collection of paintings (then as now, numbering over 600) and neo-classical sculpture. Today, the interiors, re-created as they appear in Turner’s watercolours, contain an astonishing array of art, furniture and ceramics. Carved Room Michel Focard

Pick of Petworth House • Duchess Elizabeth’s collection of blue and white Chinese porcelain • The series of rococo mirrors bought by the 2nd Earl and displayed throughout the house • Portraits of Queen Anne’s court ladies bizarrely folded up in their frames by the 3rd Earl to accommodate a series of pictures celebrating Wellington’s victories (Beauty Room) • Mural by Laguerre depicting the Duchess of Somerset in her triumphal chariot (Grand Staircase) • Turner’s views of Petworth (Carved Room) • Boulle commode and the Head of Aphrodite (Red Room) • Flaxman’s sculpture St Michael overcoming Satan (North Gallery) • The medieval chapel with theatrical pew created for the Proud Duke • The servants’ quarters with fascinating kitchens (including a copper batterie de cuisine of more than 1,000 pieces) and other service rooms.

Petworth House, Petworth, West Sussex, is open to the public until 2 November 2011 (excluding Thursdays and Fridays). The Park is open all year from 8am to dusk. Petworth House ©NTPL/Arnhel de Serra

For details, visit: For the National Trust, visit: 3

Rudgwick, West Sussex

Price Guide ÂŁ575,000 A surprisingly spacious, detached family home situated within a nursery in a rural location * Entrance Lobby * Entrance Hall * Cloakroom * Sitting Room * Dining Room * Kitchen/Breakfast Room * Utility Room * Study * Master Bedroom with en-suite Bathroom * Three Further Double Bedrooms * Family Bathroom * Garden * Detached Double Garage *

Petworth, West Sussex

Price Guide Offers in Excess of ÂŁ600,000 FREEHOLD A renovated grade II listed retail premises of approximately 2,000 sq ft with usage of both commercial and residential in a prominent position within a short walk of the town centre * Three large retail areas * Sitting room * Cloakroom * En-Suite Bathroom with permission for kitchen * Two bedrooms * Bathroom * Cellar * South facing walled courtyard garden * Gas fired central heating *

Petworth, West Sussex

Price Guide £295,000 A grade ii listed character cottage close to the town centre with a wealth of exposed timbers and some far reaching views * Entrance Lobby * Sitting Room * Dining Room * Kitchen/Breakfast Room * Cellar * * Two Double Bedrooms * Bathroom * Cottage Garden * Gas fired central heating *

Petworth, West Sussex

Price Guide to let £15,000 p.a (currently) Leasehold Plus Premium: Offers Around £40,000 * Large display showroom with good ceiling height * Ground floor storage room/office * Two first floor storage rooms plus office and cloakroom * Rear workshop plus additional storage and cloakroom * Parking for two cars *

N ews

South Downs Planning The first meeting of the South Downs National Park Planning Committee on 9 May considered three applications: for a Church Hall at Bohunt Manor, Liphook (East Hampshire District Council); floodlighting of a sports pitch near Winchester; and the change of use of a poultry farm at Wolfhanger Farm, Alresford. All were refused. “I am very pleased with the way today’s meeting went,” says Andrew Shaxson, Chair of the Planning Committee The meeting, was well attended including some 70 members of the public. He added: “There was good debate by the committee members, and in all cases members of the public and local councillors had the opportunity to address the committee to make representations on matters of interest and concern to them. “The National Park Authority has to balance conservation of the national park, and promoting understanding and enjoyment of the national park with the social and economic well-being of the park’s communities. In these cases, the conservation interests were found to prevail.”

Summer Special Fowlers have a summer promotion that gives everyone whose house they value for the next three months – for sale or rent an annual subscription to Ideal Home magazine and a chance to win £500 towards their removal costs.

Fowlers’ Managing Director Marcel Hoad said, “Property market sentiment is definitely on the move and spring is more like summer this year. So now may be the right time to be moving.

To make a planning application, apply to the local council as previously. Applications submitted through the Planning Portal on the South Downs National Park Planning Website will be automatically routed to the relevant local planning authority. Full details of the applications and the planning officers’ recommendations to the Planning Committee are in the committee report available at:

UK house prices

The latest Halifax House Price Index, published on 9 May, shows that the reduction in prices continues; and there has been a “modest tightening in market conditions.

• Typical mortgage payments for a new borrower have fallen from 48% of average disposable earnings in mid 2007 to 29% in the first quarter of 2011. This key measure of affordability is at a better level than the long-term average over the past 25 years (37%) – an important factor supporting housing demand. Marcel Hoad with colleagues Laetitia Holdaway (Lettings), Jenny Breton (Pulborough), and Mawgan White (Billinghurst) enjoy the early summer sunshine

The offer is triggered by registering with any of Fowler’s three offices in Storrington, Pulborough and Billingshurst.


How to make a planning application

Martin Ellis, housing economist, said: “The underlying trend in house prices continues to be one of modest decline. Prices in the three months to April were 1.2% lower than in the previous three months. There was a 1.4% fall in prices in April following no change in March.”

“We find that many owners and landlords have been holding their properties off the market because they have got into a habit of delaying. Meanwhile, they may have missed opportunities and could have moved ahead with their lives. “There are good buyers around and there is a voracious appetite for rental properties – plus an excellent yield for landlords. Our campaign seems already to be driving this message home”.

Fowlers, 01903 745844

The SDNPA will deal with an estimated 4,000 planning applications a year, making it the eighth largest planning authority in the country. Most applications will be determined at local level by the 15 local authorities in the park under agency agreements with each authority. The Planning Committee of the SDNPA will determine the more potentially significant applications, and retain overall policy control.

• The number of people in jobs increased by 143,000 in the three months to February compared with the previous three months, according to the latest figures from the ONS. This rise was due to a 140,000 increase in full-time employment. • Mortgages approved to finance house purchase – a leading indicator of completed house sales – increased by 2% between February and March on a seasonally adjusted basis, according to Bank of England industry-wide figures. Approvals in 2011 Q1 were 2% higher than in 2010 Q4. Details Annual change -3.7% Quarterly change -1.2% Monthly change -1.4% Average Price £160,395

petersfield’s petersfield’s where your home is where your home is Petersfield | 01730 265 266 8am-10pm weekdays | email | Residential sales Petersfield |

01730 265 266 8am-10pm weekdays | email | Residential sales

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Green fair The South Downs Green Fair attracted a

cheerful crowd of some 2,000 people to the Sustainability Centre, near East Meon on Sunday 8 May.

Damian Hinds MP with Janet Hammerton, (Education Officer), and Mary Lewis right (Sustainability Centre Manager)

Left to right: Tim Harland, Mary Lewis, John-Paul Flintoff, Ben Law and Maddy Harland

The centre was awash with children, colour, crafts, food producers, music, singers, story tellers, stallholders, tepees, tents. Tim and Maddy Harland from Permanent Publications (with the award-winning magazine Permaculture) gave a presenation with Grand Designs’ author Ben Law and writer John-Paul Flintoff. And local MP Damian Hinds, MP for Hampshire East, turned up, almost to the day when he won his seat in the 2010 General 8


E v ents

Election. he donned a spider’s headpiece, and joined children and adults in a colourful fancy dress procession at the end of the day. “Although my main interest lies in education,” Damian Hinds said, “I have followed closely the work of Terena Plowright and her greening campaign.” He added that he and fellow MP Steve Brine (Winchester) had organized a reception for Terena in the House of Commons in June.

Some 6,000 people flocked to the two-day Food and Farming Fair at the Weald and Downland Museum (near Goodwood). In bright and breezy weather during the May bank holiday weekend, visitors enjoyed delicious local food and drink from quality producers.

This annual event has been going for more than a decade and this year there were some 65 stallholders. Amanda Budding, from Middleton-on-Sea, won the live ‘cook-off’ finals of the Downland Cookery Challenge as the best amateur chef. She earned a £200 cash prize and a bottle of champagne for her ‘Textures of Arun’, a modern twist on Arundel mullet. Judges included Giles Thompson, proprietor of the Earl of March; Jessica Nevett, from the Southern Co-operative; and Victoria Finch, Food Writer at the Chichester Observer. The chocolate demonstrations by Sarah Jane Stanes, CEO of the Academy of Culinary Arts, proved one of most popular live events. And children loved the artificial milking cow. Terena Plowright, leader of the local greening campaign with her dogs

Weald and Downland Museum, 01243 811348

Terena was at the Centre with her dogs, and they were recently seen in public walking the South Downs Way on a map in Petersfield Square on 1 April, the day the South Downs Park Authority officially took on its responsibility for running the Park. The Centre, which has the South Downs Way running through it, also boasts a smart new café, where attendees were enjoying some great food. Sustainability Centre, 01730 823166


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Nick Keith visits Pulborough and Storrington, two places within easy reach of the centre of the 100-mile South Downs way, to find out how they are faring

Village people

‘Pulborough for professionals’

Broadly speaking, Pulborough attracts professionals who commute. It has a mainline railway station some 75 minutes from London and a network of road connections to towns like Chichester, Horsham, Guildford and Gatwick (a boon for airline staff).

In Pulborough, Jamie Daniell has worked in the same offices near the station for 35 years. The offices are now occupied by Monkhouse & Bannisters. Monkhouse & Co was set up in 1993 after a buyout and it acquired Bannisters in Haywards Heath in 2000. With 2 offices, 8 partners, and 21 staff, the firm describes itself as a “rural estate agency. Jamie Daniell adds: “We are also a regional estate agency, covering a wide area across West and East Sussex and Surrey. There is a type of ‘Monkhouse’ property from a cottage to an estate.” The firm is multi-disciplinary, offering a wide range of services – surveying, valuations, compensations, estate and farm management, planning, environmental issues, forestry, lettings and more. “We are well-established with well qualified partners,” says Jamie Daniell. “We do a job in property properly.” The market has not settled down yet, he adds. “We are not at the mercy of the banks [and mortgage lenders] in this part of the world, we have lots of instructions, and viewings. I see a desire from people to get things done, but they are taking time to make the final commitment.” Jointly with Knight Frank, Monkhouse & Bannisters offers the £5m Paternosters Estate, at Warninglid, West Sussex. This “charming and diverse estate has an excellent family house”. Set in 160 acres, Paternosters has an indoor swimming pool and squash court; a fruit farm with a cottage; two more cottages; various outbuildings; and ponds, park land, wood land and arable land. Although the estate is at Cuckfield near Haywards Heath there are views to the South Downs.


South Downs view from Hangleton, Monkhouse & Bannisters

The Hangleton Farm Equestrian Centre at Ferring provides a well-run livery yard in 40 acres with 135 stables, a six-bedroom house for the owner and one for staff with six bedrooms. Comyn & James was started up less than a year ago, but they have hit the ground running. “We knew a lot of people having worked for other local agents,” says Simon James. “The market has been good for us this year when we have taken on lots of stock and we have not stopped.” With easy access to local towns and Gatwick Airport, the area attracts professional people and pilots, as well as people who sail or want a second home. Comyn & James have found that, while there are few first-time buyers, there are also plenty of people downsizing or able to buy a house without having to sell first. Simon James and his partner Michael Comyn aim to offer a truly personal service. “Although many agents say they do this, they often miss out on the basics,” Simon James explains. “With our firm buyers and sellers are always dealing with a director.” Comyn & James have joined the Guild of Professional Estate Agents, based in Park Lane, Mayfair. They are delighted that one of their properties has had prime position in the Guild’s office window in the run up to the Royal Wedding. This property is at Beedings Castle in Nutbourne, near Pulborough.

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‘Storrington for shoppers’

A new Waitrose opened in Storrington last year to support good existing outlets for both shopping and sports. Storrington has a leisure centre, tennis and squash clubs, golf at Pulborough and West Sussex, and walking and riding on the South Downs. Among the six estate agents is Henry Adams, where Philip Jordan is one of 13 partners, and among the 10 part owners. The firm is well exposed and houses are marketed on 25 websites. Philip Jordan comes from a family estate agents and he is the fifth generation as his great grandfather established a firm in Worthing in the 1880s. “We are seeing some hesitation in the market because of the economy but people who are secure in their jobs or finances may want to move house.

Henry Adams has “a good balance” of residential sales and lettings, with some 200 rental properties. With offices in Pulborough, Storrington, Horsham and London (Mayfair), Guy Leonard is run by husband and wife team Neil and Cathy Moore. They acquired the firm from founder Guy Leonard when he retired in 2007, having worked for him for 20 years. Cathy, who runs the lettings side of the business, says: “Our USP is our customer service; we are local and we employ only local staff.” The firm is making sales from a good supply of instructions. For example, a characterful semi-detached cottage at Rackham, near Amberley, with three bedrooms was sold quickly – it was under offer after only two weeks on the market with a guide price of £375,000.

“We are affected to some extent by a market which is stuttering overall, because of [uncertain] public sentiment. This is one of the most important of many factors which affect the property market. But we are fortunate that this is such a desirable place to live.” Lower Nash Farm in Nutbourne (see page 12) “with fine south westerly views towards the South Downs” has a fivebed farmhouse, a 2-bed converted barn for staff or relatives, numerous outbuildings and 20.6 acres for £1.7 million. Close to the South Downs is a three-bed period cottage at Coldwaltham, South of Pulborough for £335,000.

Knapweld Chase where prices range from £395,000 to £795,000, Guy Leonard


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A new development of five executive houses at Knapweld Chase, Thakeham Road, Storrington. There are three detached (the largest with six double bedrooms) and two semi-detached houses (with three double bedrooms). They are next door to National Trust woodland, and all have secluded gardens and garages.

Pick of the Properties

In the popular village of West Chiltington, Guy Leonard has Acorn House. Built in 2007 in Sussex style, the house has all ‘mod cons’ and an inglenook fireplace in the drawing room and seven bedrooms. It is set in an acre of gardens and grounds, designed by John Brookes. It is not far from West Sussex golf club. Clarke & Charlesworth in Storrington report that they have a good range of interesting properties after a “good end to 2010” followed by “a shortage at the beginning of this year. “There has not been much dynamism in the market,” says Clive Pightling,” with a hesitancy among buyers. As a firm Clarke & Charlesworth prides itself on marketing clients’ houses strongly with high quality brochures and advertising. With 20 years in the property business, Clive Pightling acquired the business in 2003, and has rebranded this spring. “We have a reputation for handling interesting or unusual properties in the RH20 post code.

Kithurst Barns, Storrington

4 to 6 bedrooms 30 ft kitchen Refectory dining room Guest suite Connecting barn with 2-room office & party room

Agent: Clarke & Charlesworth, 01903 741212 Guide price: £1.5m

A conversion 10 years ago of three traditional Sussex Barns on the slopes of the South Downs. Provides some 4,500 sq ft of living space and 1.500 sq ft of office accommodation. 7 acres of grounds set out as fields and grassland.

Among these – all in Storrington – are: a part-period, part-new mews cottage for £465,000; and a modern house at the foot of the South Downs, with large reception rooms (including a dining room) and three bedrooms for £695,000. Clarke & Charlesworth also offers Kithurst Barns, a £1.5m conversion, once part of the Parham Estate, on the slopes of the South Downs at the end of a private lane. See opposite. Contacts Clarke & Charlesworth, 01903 741212 Comyn & James, 01798 888111 Guy Leonard (Storrington office), 01903 742354 Henry Adams, 01903 742535 Monkhouse & Bannisters, 01798 872081

Bennetts Wiston, near Steyning Large reception hall Sitting room with fireplace Dining room with inglenook 5 bedrooms

Agent: Henry Adams, 01903 742535 Guide price: £875,000

16th century Grade II listed house close to South Downs. A former Victorian granary rebuilt into detached double garage.

1 Beedings Castle Nutbourne, Pulborough 4 bedrooms 2 bathrooms Drawing room Dining room Galleried landing Lower Nash Farm, Nutbourne, Henry Adams


Agent: Comyn & James, 01798 888111 Guide price: £645,000

A 2-storey wing of a late 19th century castle with private and communal gardens, workshop, sun room, rural views, hilltop setting

Antiques by Spencer Swaffer of Arundel

The real beauty is Alitex Conservatories are not made of wood. In less than 5 years, a wooden conservatory will probably need to be painstakingly rubbed down and repainted. For over 50 years Alitex Glasshouses have been made from aluminium, which has the beautiful appearance of wood, but none of the drawbacks. With minimal attention they’ll retain their elegant looks and have the added beauty of a lifetime guarantee. Alitex, aluminium made beautiful. Come and see us at Chelsea Flower Show - Stand MA10. • 01730 826900 • We invite you to visit our Design Studio and Show Houses at Torberry Farm, Petersfield, Hampshire. Working in partnership with The RHS and The National Trust


South Downs Property issue 4  

South Downs Property issue 4 13 May