Part of the Lowther Estate is being sold following the death of the 7th Earl of Lonsdale last May.

The estate totals 70,000 acres, but has a complicated ownership structure with control split between various trusts.

Thornthwaite Hall at Bampton, near Penrith, is a 548-acre grass farm in the Lake District National Park that is likely to attract interest from farmers, conservationists and lifestyle buyers, according to agent Jim Bryant of Bidwells.

‘Rare opportunity’

“It will be an interesting test of the relative strengths of the commercial and amenity markets,” said Mr Bryant, who is selling the farm jointly with Savills’ Andrew Black for offers over £1.6m.

“This is a rare opportunity to buy a commercial grass farm of size and create an idyllically located home in the Lake District,” he said.

Split into two principal lots, the farm includes a Grade II listed six-be house that is thought to have its origins in the 13th Century, but is now in need of complete renovation. This is available separately with a range of buildings and 40 acres.

Environmentally Sensitive Area

Anybody who bought the balance of the land would also have to purchase its 870-ewe flock of hefted Swaledale sheep for £115,686, said Mr Bryant.

Grazing rights for 1050 sheep on Mardale Common are included with the land, which attracted an Environmentally Sensitive Area payment of £18,900 last year.