Symmetry and balance

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The Georgians loved symmetry and balance.

It meant their buildings always looked just right and nowhere is that more apparent than in the facade of Hall Place at Havant. It was built in 1770 and was owned by the Longcroft family for more than 200 years as the manor house of Havant.

It then became offices, but the balanced view of the current owners is that it no longer suits the needs of a modern office in the way it could when they bought it in 1979, long before the digital age took hold.

They undertook a sympathetic restoration and refurbishment to bring the interior back to impeccable standards but minimised any necessary modern rebuilding and alterations.

The proposal now is to create two homes from this elegant, Grade II listed villa and its attached cottage, one with four bedrooms and the other a two-bedroom annexe. This should safeguard the integrity and architectural character.

It is being sold in its long-standing layout to give the new owners opportunity to exercise their own imaginations without affecting the existing structure too much.

Hall Place has a twin-pillared portico over the main door which opens into a 36ft entrance hall with a beautiful staircase and a fine, shaped handrail rising to the first floor.

The ground floor has sitting and drawing rooms to the left of the hall, each with windows in symmetrical double height shaped bays that give an elegance to match the simplicity of the double frontage.

There is a separate formal dining room and a kitchen with steps in the hallway between them that would lead to the division with the annexe – although this could remain part of the main house to create a truly spectacular home.

The first floor of the main house is planned to have four very generous bedrooms as well as bathrooms while a large studio above the proposed annexe is ready for division into bedrooms. ‘This is a real opportunity to create a family home, perhaps with the opportunity of income generation through letting the annexe,’ says Colin Shairp, of Fine and Country Southern Hampshire.

“It truly is a magnificent house and there’s no need to be radical to take it forward to the next stage in its life.

“There is a simplistic elegance to the house which is pleasing when you consider how complicated the Victorians made their houses, with so much fiddly detail.

“Hall Place has been home to an international marketing agency following a restoration that cost twice the original purchase price. The process was diligent and involved interior changes that could easily be reversed. The cottage that forms the basis of the annexe had to be rebuilt from first floor level.

“Now that marketing is well into the digital age, Hall Place cannot be adapted without significant change so the business will move – but its loving restoration of Hall Place remains, to the advantage of the next owners!”

Guide price is £850,000. For more information, contact Fine and Country Southern Hampshire on 023 93 277 277 or emaildrayton@fineandcountry.com