Property for sale in Wilsham Lane, Countisbury, Lynton, Devon EX35

Guide price £1,950,000
Property for sale
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Property features

  • Within Exmoor National Park and close to the coast
  • Highly successful luxury farmhouse B&B
  • Substantial self catering cottage
  • Indoor pool, games room and 70.28 acres
  • Established, owner-run and with excellent repeat business
  • Desirable lifestyle opportunity

Property description

Highly successful and profitable luxury B&B and self catering cottage on A small private estate

Wilsham Farm occupies a delightful setting accessed via a quiet no-through country lane on the outskirts of Countisbury. The property sits at the foot of Wilsham Lane and forms part of the tiny rural hamlet of Wilsham.

The main house is Listed Grade II being of Historical or Architectural Interest and this is apparent throughout the accommodation. The building incorporates various periods. The oldest part is possibly 17th Century with mid 18th Century alterations, then remodelled early to mid 19th Century. Built of local coursed sandstone with rendered elevations and rendered chimney stacks, recently redecorated, beneath a two span slate tiled roof having mainly wooden cross windows.

The house boasts a number of well proportioned and attractive reception rooms. The accommodation is substantial and versatile, well suited to both family living and formal entertaining, with the size and layout of the rooms shown on the floorplans enclosed within the brochure.

The accommodation on the ground floor is well laid out with the principal reception rooms leading off a large reception hall/study with original fireplace and early to mid 19th Century staircase with stick balusters rising to the first floor. The drawing room is particularly impressive with windows across the south front of the house with an attractive chimney piece at one end. There is a superb farmhouse kitchen with old flagstone floor, cream enamelled four oven aga housed in an old fireplace complete with bread oven, together with an extensive range of fitted cupboards and drawers having maple work surfaces, an integrated secondary electric oven and a double fridge larder unit. A substantial timber built conservatory runs the width of the house facing west taking full advantage of the wonderful setting with access to the terrace. Beyond the kitchen is the domestic quarter linked by a cross passage hall leading to a laundry room, WC, pantry and boot room with access to the courtyard. The sitting room is housed in one of the oldest parts of the property enjoying a lovely aspect on the east elevation. It has an attractive open fireplace housing a wood burning stove and bread oven, to the right of which is an old winding staircase with access to the bedroom directly above.

The principal staircase leads to an attractive central landing arranged over two levels, with views to the south. The master bedroom suite is set out above the drawing room and incorporates a most attractive bedroom with original chamber fireplace and fitted wardrobes, leading to a dressing room with sitting area and en suite bathroom beyond with separate shower. There are four further double bedrooms each with fitted wardrobes and their own en suite facilities. Each bedroom enjoys a different aspect across the adjoining landscape.

Wilsham Farm was last sold in 2007 when it was acquired by the current owner. During their tenure of more than ten years they have continued to make changes, not least installing a state of the art heating system housed in a substantial modern farm building, as well as generally upgrading the house and adding further stabling.

Swallows rest/the cottage

Swallows Rest is situated to the south east of the main house set around an attractive courtyard being built of locally quarried coursed sandstone with attractive relief fenestration beneath a slate tiled roof. The substantial accommodation is set out over three floors with the property currently operating as a highly successful holiday let generating significant income for the estate.

The cottage is a barn conversion and typical of the period it retains its character features. It benefits from its own access along a private drive as well as areas of private garden with attractive surrounding views. The living accommodation in brief extends to two reception rooms one with wood burning stove, kitchen with Rayburn, together with five bedrooms and five shower/bathrooms.

Attached to Swallows Rest is the remaining portion of the original barn, extending to almost 2,000 sq ft, re-roofed by a previous owner. It is worthy of conversion to a family sized dwelling subject to consent from Exmoor National Park Authority. Being built in the same manner as Swallows Rest with attractive fenestration and retaining the expected features including substantial trusses and timbers. It could also benefit from its own south facing private garden.


There are two blocks of stabling including a traditional range comprising three stables with adjoining feed store and tack room with an overhanging canopy and all facing an enclosed yard, conveniently situated to the east of the main house. Beyond the courtyard to the south of the main house is a range of modern timber stabling including three stables and a foaling box all set within a concrete yard with easy access to the adjacent fields.

Modern farm building

Lying to the south of the main house is a modern portal steel framed shed measuring approximately 60ft x 40ft, with concrete floor and electric light and power. This building was purposely built to house the energy efficient wood chip heating system in 2014. The heating system is a state of the art Austrian made eta 130 kw biomass boiler. The boiler generates a substantial profit per annum through the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (rhi) with about 16 years unexpired, and serves the main house, swimming pool and cottage (excluding aga and Rayburn ovens).

Pool room

Lying directly to the south front of the house is a dedicated 40ft x 22ft pool room built of a powder coated aluminium frame housing a heated swimming pool with sloping floor, tiled surround, dehumidifier and separate plant room.

Additional outbuildings

Comprising tandem garage with pedestrian door to a games room. Separate wood store and additional store housing the incoming electricity supply and back-up generator. Seven timber built mobile field shelters.

Gardens and grounds

The gardens and grounds are an attractive feature of the property and are well established, being principally laid to lawn with areas of substantial terracing to the south and west of the house. The gardens contain mature trees and shrubs providing year round interest and an attractive backdrop to the property. From the lawn there is a fine view to the south west towards Brendon Church in the distance.

The land

Wilsham Farm sits within just over 70 acres of most attractive undulating farmland laid principally to permanent pasture with some young woodland. The ring fenced land consists of a series of enclosures, most with water troughs. The landscape is typical of Exmoor with ancient woodland and veteran trees, old hedgerows, hand built walls, earth enclosures and areas of gorse, being a rich habitat for wildlife associated with Exmoor National Park.

Situated to the north of the main house is a traditional stone linhay with potential for conversion, subject to the usual consents. There is a spring fed pond below the house. The property adjoins ancient woodland in the ownership of the National Trust forming a spectacular backdrop with impressive views to the west towards the spectacular wooded East Lyn gorge. From the upper fields above the house the views can be enjoyed towards the sea in the direction of Lynton.

The property has further sporting potential and could provide an excellent small family shoot. As a unique property the sale of Wilsham Farm provides a rare opportunity to buyers looking for a compact and private country estate or to buyers wishing to continue and further expand the holiday let potential.


Wilsham Farm is set amid outstanding scenery surrounded by the moorland of Exmoor National Park. Located close to the Somerset/Devon border and the northerly coast of Devon, its closest villages are Countisbury and Brendon and further amenities are close by in Porlock to the east and Lynton and Lynmouth to the west. Exford lies a short distance away at the heart of the Exmoor National Park with amenities such as shops, hotels and public houses.

Wilsham is situated off the A39 which features as No 1 in the aa’s 10 best scenic drives in Britain.

The ancient twinned towns of Lynton and Lynmouth sit on the coast where Exmoor meets the sea. The towns are set between steep hillsides and deep wooded valleys, separated by a dramatic descent; Lynmouth sits at sea level, whilst Lynton sits higher in the trees, full of quaint narrow lanes and independent shops to explore. They offer a cliff railway, historical museum, and coastal boat trips. The surrounding area is rich with characterful villages, cosy pubs and tearooms serving good local produce.

Exmoor boasts a unique inspiring landscape of open moorland, magical deep wooded valleys, fast flowing streams and rolling farmland, with high sea cliffs plunging into the Bristol Channel. The National Park’s 267 square miles, home to wild red deer and Exmoor ponies, provide a sense of remoteness, wildness and tranquillity rare in southern Britain. The North Devon Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty represent a stunning section of the coast which is nationally protected to preserve the beauty of its landscape. The coastal landscape features stunning panoramic views both inland and out to sea, expansive beaches and sheltered woodland combes.

The area is a walker’s paradise from the spectacular Watersmeet circuit and walk to nearby Foreland Point Lighthouse to the iconic Valley of Rocks, an extensive network of rights of way and the South West Coast Path running along the entire length of the Heritage Coast. It is also famous for its literary connections – the poet Coleridge is linked with nearby Porlock and R D Blackmoor’s world renowned novel Lorna Doone made this part of Exmoor famous.

Exmoor lends itself perfectly to game shooting especially world class high pheasant shoots. The area is renowned for all country pursuits and welcomes over two million national and international visitors annually, carefully administered by Exmoor National Park Authority, as one of the country’s national assets.
Floorplan(s): Floorplan

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