For Free: Oxfordshire manor house with 'finest view in England' - but there is a catch

A beautiful and historic manor house with “the finest view in England” is being offered for free – but there is a catch.

You will have to stump up for around £3 million of repairs.

The 300-year-old private house overlooking the historical Blenheim Palace estate is being offered without charge to anyone who can afford to spend millions over the next two decades on its restoration.

Vanbrugh Bridge on Blenheim Estate

Estate Agents Carter Jonas say that 18th Century Woodstock House is the largest private residence on the 2,000 acre Oxfordshire estate, the birthplace of wartime prime minister Sir Winston Churchill, and overlooks the landscaped beauty of Blenheim Palace gardens.

Lady Randolph Churchill, who famously remarked that the view from Woodstock House, the largest private residence on the estate, offered "the finest view in England."

The property has a grand hall, four reception rooms, eight bedroom suites, a cellar, a coach house and stable block – all set in 3.5 acres of walled gardens.

The twenty-year lease is available free of charge providing that the tenant commits to the renovation plans. Once restored, its tenant will be able to live there for the remainder of the lease, but will not be able to sub-let.

Mark Charter, of the Oxford branch of Carter Jonas, said:

Blenheim Palace, a reward for the military triumphs of John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough, was built in the early-1700s.

It is the only non-royal or non-church residence in the country to hold the title of palace.

Winston Churchill was born at the palace in 1874 and it was in its gardens that he proposed to Clementine Hozier in 1908. In 1987 the palace was designated a Unesco World Heritage Site and today plays host to 650,000 visitors a year.

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