A £15m stately home has gone back on the market for a cut-price £2.5million after it was burnt to the ground in a suspected arson attack.
Grade I listed Parnham House, near Beaminster, Dorset, is now just a charred shell of the magnificent mansion it once was following the fire in April 2017.
The ruins of Parnham House (pictured) after it was burnt down in a suspected arson attack. Its owner, Austrian-born financier Michael Treichl, bought the Grade I listed mansion in Dorset in 2001 for £4million
Parnham House near Beaminster, Dorset, pictured burning down in April 2017. After Mr Treichi was arrested on suspicion of arson he fled to Geneva, where he died in a suspected suicide two months later
Its owner, Austrian-born financier Michael Treichl, bought Grade I-listed Parnham in Dorset in 2001 for £4million.
He spent £10million restoring the building before it mysteriously burnt down — and police accused him of starting the blaze.
After Mr Treichi was arrested on suspicion of arson he fled to Geneva where he died in a suspected suicide two months later.
Dorset Police then concluded its investigation into the fire near Beaminster, Dorset, saying it is not looking for anyone else in connection with the blaze.
A sale of £3million was agreed for the Elizabethan manor to a mystery buyer earlier this year but it has fallen through, placing the immediate future of the fragile structure in serious doubt.
It has now been listed again, with the asking price slashed to £2.5million in the hope of a quick sale amid fears the external walls could collapse.
The stately home was destroyed and burnt to the ground in the huge blaze. The previous buyer’s purchase recently fell through and it has now been listed again, with the asking price slashed to £2.5million
One part of the inside of the house being gutted during the fire. The new owner will have to invest millions in rebuilding and restoring the mansion to its former glory and the work will have to be approved by Historic England
Dorset and Wiltshire firefighters attended the huge fire that took place over two years ago. The stately home is now a charred shell of the magnificent mansion it once was before the blaze
The new owner will have to invest millions of pounds in rebuilding and restoring Parnham House to its former glory and the work will have to be approved by Historic England.
The 38,000sq/ft property is being sold by chartered surveyors Sanderson Weatherall which has been hired by the receivers to handle the sale.
Daniel Hardy, of Sanderson Weatherall, said: ‘We had a sale agreed but the purchaser’s funding was withdrawn and that was the reason why it didn’t go through otherwise they would have been in a position to exchange contracts.
‘It was a genuine reason for it not selling. We have just put it back on the market and we have a significant number of interested parties.
‘The new owner will have to decide what to do with it nut it is Grade I and Grade II listed and any rebuilding will be subject to discussions with Natural England and Dorset Council.’
The ruins of Parnham House the day after the fire with smoke rising out of the gutted interior of the stately home. A firefighter helicopter is pictured continuing to douse the smoke and flames
Parnham House pictured before the fire. Built in 1551, the stately home is the oldest country house in Dorset and was one of the finest in south west England until the fire took place
The well-kept gardens pictured before the fire. The 38,000sq/ft property is being sold by chartered surveyors Sanderson Weatherall which has been hired by the receivers to handle the sale
A spokesperson for Historic England said: ‘We are aware that the hoped-for sale of Grade I listed Parnham House has fallen through.
‘We are aware that the property is now being remarketed.
‘The property remains vulnerable, and a rapid resolution is needed on the sale of the property to allow repair and restoration works to begin.’
Built in 1551, Parnham is the oldest country house in Dorset and was one of the finest in south west England until the fire.
Mr Treichl and his former Vogue model wife Emma bought it in 2001 for £4million and are said to have spent £10million refurbishing it.
A conservation report following the fire revealed the internal walls and ceilings had collapsed and the outer walls were at risk of falling down.
The property is being marketed by estate agents Knight Frank.
Parnham House before the fire (left) compared to afterwards (right). A conservation report following the fire revealed the internal walls and ceilings had collapsed and the outer walls were at risk of falling down
John Makepeace (above), a millionaire furniture designer, owned the house for 25 years before selling it to the Treichls. He previously said that whoever buys Parnham House should be allowed to demolish it
A spokesperson for Knight Frank said: ‘The house suffered catastrophic fire damage in 2017 and now requires holistic rebuilding and restoration.
‘As a Grade I Listed building of exceptional historic and architectural interest, a buyer will need to liaise with Historic England and Dorset Council in relation to any restoration works.’
The sale does include the three bedroom Dower House and a two bedroom cottage that are on the 130 acre estate and were unaffected by the fire.
Millionaire furniture designer John Makepeace, who owned the house for 25 years before selling it to the Treichls, has previously stated that whoever buys Parnham should be allowed to demolish it.
He said: ‘I have no idea how anybody would set about doing anything with it because the damage is so extensive.
‘It’s a shell so it will require an enormous amount of planning to restore what was there.
‘My inclination would be to have a fabulous contemporary house there.
‘I am pleased they are getting on the case with it because it’s been too long.’