Historic House & 54 acres at Binna Ness, South Whiteness, South Whiteness

Key Details

Reception Rooms:

2

Bedrooms:

3

Bathrooms:

1

Council Tax:

Band B

Status:

Sold

Rooms:

Sittingroom, Dining Room, Kitchen, three Double Bedrooms, Bathroom, Scullery Store Room, Hall & Front Porch. Outbuildings & Boat House.

Overview

Historic Shetland house set in around 54 acres in a beautiful unspoilt setting overlooking the sea at the very southern tip of the Strom Ness peninsular, approximately 12 miles from Lerwick.

Accessed via a short, 5 minute boat trip across the voe from South Whiteness, ‘Jackville’ is a grade B listed house dating from 1834.

In front of the house is a walled garden area. At the rear is a substantial outbuilding and there is also a stone pier & boathouse.

Although now requiring major renovation, the property offers a great opportunity to acquire a house of considerable character in an idyllic setting. Although the location is somewhat challenging, for someone with vision there is huge scope for giving this interesting property a new lease of life, either remaining a private residence, or it would perhaps suit use as unique holiday accommodation, a base for residential courses, or some form of retreat (subject to consents), the large outbuilding offering additional potential.

A Home Report is not required for this property.

General Information

Situation

The house and the 54 acres surrounding it form the headland of the Strom Ness peninsular, a long sliver of land on the west side of Shetland, which extends southwards from Weisdale to the north.

Although just a stone’s throw from ‘civilisation’ on the other side of the voe, the location of the house sets it well apart from any other houses, in a truly ‘get-away-from-it-all’ setting enjoying stunning far reaching views of the surrounding seascape, to the island of North Havra to the west, and to Hildasay and beyond to Burra in the distance, to the south.

Access is not for the faint hearted, although that is part of its appeal. There is no road to the property although it can be reached on foot, around a two hour walk from the head of the voe. A quicker route is via a short, 5 minute boat trip across Strom Ness Voe from the Pund at the southern tip of the South Whiteness peninsular. All year round use could be possible although there will inevitably be times when access by boat is restricted, but you could always walk out if need be.

Whiteness & Weisdale, several miles to the north, are home to the main local amenities in the area, including a school and a couple of shops, one with post office & fuel. Lerwick, Shetland’s main town, just 12 miles or so away, is however within easy reach.

The Shetland Islands, the most northerly part of the United Kingdom, are located approximately 100 miles north of Aberdeen and 200 miles west of Bergen, Norway. There are over 100 islands of which 12 are inhabited. Home to around 22,000 people, the islands provide a vibrant and safe community, enjoying dramatic and unspoilt scenery and an abundance of wildlife.

An overnight ferry service operated by Northlink Ferries from Lerwick provides a link to mainland Scotland. Flybe operates direct flights from Sumburgh at the south end of Shetland, to Aberdeen, Edinburgh & Glasgow. Islanders are currently entitled to discounted travel on both.

History

The Grade B listed laird’s house, ‘Jackville’, was built for Captain Jack and his wife in 1834, the dressed stone used to build the property having been transported over a bullock track which ran along the ridge of Strom Ness.

The house was subsequently owned by a number of families, the two ‘front’ doors suggesting two separate dwellings, the property being known as ‘Jackville 1 & 2’ in the 1861 census.

Later the house and estate comprising the lands of Strom Ness & South Whiteness, was purchased by Andrew Smith of Assater, North Mavine, who returned to Scotland a wealthy man, having made his fortune overseas. The house was used in the summer months, the wooden wing at the rear built to accommodate his large family. Local staff were employed as maids and for some years a boatman stayed all year round, living in one of the converted outbuildings. A cobbled path (now overgrown) ran from the house to the north pier and it was the job of the boatman to sweep this path so that the ladies would not soil their dresses.

The property remained in the family and was later renovated in the 1960’s when an outside toilet was added. Again the property was primarily used over the summer although for a number of years in the 1970’s it was occupied all year round, also forming the base for a successful knitwear business.

More recently further work was carried out in the early 1990’s, the house reverting to summer / weekend use, although it has not been used for any significant period of time for some 8 or 9 years now.

The House

The house comprises the original rectangular, three bay, symmetrical main building, stone-built and with a slate roof, an unusually sophisticated design for a rural house of this size, plus a later wooden extension to the rear which was re-clad about 10 years ago, and a porch to the front.

The accommodation is arranged over two floors comprising three well-proportioned rooms, a large front porch, and two rooms in the rear extension, on the ground floor, plus three large bedrooms and a bathroom on the first floor.

Although the house has no electricity, it does have its own telephone service. It also has a mains water connection via a private pipe which runs beneath the voe to the supply in South Whiteness.

A small wind turbine would perhaps be the simplest way of providing power to the house or a generator could be used. In the past a gas lighting system was in operation and although this is still in existence it has not been used for some considerable time now and is probably unsafe. Drainage is currently direct to the sea. This will be registered on sale and may include a condition that a septic tank be installed by the purchaser within 5 years.

Please note any alterations or change of use would be subject to any necessary consents required and prospective purchasers should satisfy themselves in this regard.

The property is being sold complete with all the furniture currently remaining aside from some personal effects.

Accommodation

On the Ground Floor

Front Porch

(Approx. 4.55m x 1.75m) (15’ x 5’9”) A large glazed porch to the east side of the house forms the main entrance as well as providing a great place to sit and enjoy the views over the garden and beyond to the voe. Two original ‘front’ doors open to the hall although one has not used for some time.

Hall

(Approx. 5.7m x 1.25m at widest point) (18’9” x 4’) Like much of the house, the long hall which runs between the sittingroom to the south and the kitchen to the north, retains original features and detailing including working shutters to an internal window to the porch, and shelved cupboards at either end. A further door opens to the dining room and a wood lined stair leads to the first floor.

Sittingroom

(Approx. 4.65m x 4m) (15’3” x 13’2”) Well-proportioned room with windows to the east & south both enjoying views over the voe, both windows having removable storm windows, an early form of secondary glazing. Again original features remain including a fireplace & surround, and cornice. Large shelved cupboard off.

Dining Room

(Approx. 4.05m x 3.3m at widest points) (13’3” x 10’10”) West-facing room with working shutters to the window, fireplace & surround including over mantle mirror, and small cupboard under the stairs which used to house the gas supply for the lighting.

Kitchen

(Approx. 4.6m x 3.85m) (15’2” x 12’8”) Large kitchen facing east, with solid-fuel ‘Rayburn’ (not tested and probably needs replacement), stone flagged floor and pantry cupboard off. A door at the rear leads to the wooden wing comprising:-

Scullery

(Approx. 3.7m x 1.9m) (12’2” x 6’3”) With back door, sink and store room (approx. 3.75m x 2.65 at widest points) (12’4” x 8’9”), originally a maid’s room, off.

On the First Floor

Landing

(Approx. 5.7m x 0.95m) (18’9” x 3’) Leading to three large double bedrooms two of which have a fireplace and surround, and a bathroom again with a fireplace. Like the hall, there are shelved cupboards at either end.

Bedroom 1

(Approx. 4.65m x 3.95m) (15’3” x 13’) With window to the front of the house and cupboard over the stairs.

Bathroom

(Approx. 3.95m x 3m at widest points) (13’ x 9’10”) Installed in the 1970’s, with bath, W.C. & wash hand basin plus built-in wardrobe.

Bedroom 2

(Approx. 4.65m x 3.85m) (15’2” x 12’8”) Similarly sized room, again to the front of the house and with cupboard off.

Bedroom 3

(Approx. 4.6m x 3.8m) (15’ x 12’6”) A couple of steps down from the landing lead to this wood-lined third bedroom in the wooden rear extension, which enjoys a southerly aspect.

External

The house, which is situated above the shore on the east side of the headland, has a stone flagged area immediately in front of it, and beyond that a large walled garden contains several trees along the south wall, and original plants including tiger lilies, mombresia & bluebells. The garden is divided in two by a hedge of rosa ragusa, the eastern half having two large vegetable patches which have in the past been extremely productive.

Behind the house is a large outbuilding, thought to pre-date the main house, consisting of a wood-lined boatsman’s room (approx. 5.3m x 3m) (17’6” x 9’9”) with small wood-burning stove, a large store room (approx. 5.5m x 3m) (18’ x 9’9”), originally the byre but later used for storing wood etc., a workshop (approx. 3.5m x 3m) (11’6” x9’9”), also wood-lined, with a wall of cupboards and fireplace (possibly the main living room of the original croft), and a further large room, (approx. 7.6m x 3.1m) (25’ x 10’) now a coal store, which houses an old boiler & mangle suggesting use as a wash house. Finally at the northern end is an outside toilet and behind it, a further small room with the remains of an old sand cistern toilet and separate two seater toilet.

The outbuilding could perhaps be converted into extra living accommodation, or perhaps as studio / office or similar space (subject to consents).

The Land

As noted the house is being sold along with the surrounding non-croft land which is estimated to extend to around 54 acres or thereby as shown on the [plan](assets/files/plans/binnanessplan.pdf "Click here to see a sketch plan showing the extent of land that goes with the house") (not to scale). The whole of the headland is included up to a stone dyke which defines the north boundary.

To the north of the house is a stone pier used to access the property, and a large Boathouse containing three boats. The roof of the boathouse requires attention and the building has not been opened for many years as the hinges on the large mahogany door have seized, but it is understood that it houses three boats including a clinker built day boat built by Walterson of Scalloway, a large 10 person boat with oars & outboard motor, plus a small Orkney sail boat. These will all be left although are thought to be in varying states of repair and are included as seen.

In the early 20th century, a small steam boat was used to bring in provisions and coal, landing at a second south pier although this no longer exists.

On the shore side there is a right of access to a noost at the Pund where the boat lies when the house is not in use. This forms the main access point although under an informal arrangement with the neighbouring land owner, a small fibreglass boat that is used for crossing the voe on a daily basis (also to be included in the sale), is tied up / moored at ‘The Hole’ to the west of the Pund.

A small piece of land to the left of the cattle grid at the turn off from the main South Whiteness road, is also included. This land originally housed a garage. This no longer exists but it is thought it might be possible to erect another small structure there as a form of shore base.

Council Tax

Understood to currently be Band B. Prospective purchasers should however contact Shetland Islands Council directly for confirmation. Details of Council Tax rates can be found on the Shetland Islands Council website.

Property Location

To reach the property take the South Whiteness road from the main road west. Follow the road for just over 2 miles until you come to a carved house sign (‘Omaruru’) and a sign to a salmon farm to the right. Turn right and drive a short distance until the road forks, go through the gate and park outside the cottage (Pund). Note the track may not be accessible by all vehicles so it may be necessary to park on the main South Whiteness road.

To see the location of the property in an overall Shetland context, adjust the zoom by clicking the + or - buttons. Use the 'Map', 'Satellite' & 'Hybrid' buttons to switch between an ordnance survey style road map, a satellite aerial photograph or a combination (hybrid) of the two. Please note that the date of the satellite image is unknown and may not show new buildings.

(Please be aware the Google Street View was taken on the date shown. The building and surroundings may have changed since then. We always recommend you view the property personally.)

Thanks again for your brilliant service with both my property sales over the past years. Your experience in Shetland is much noted with local people.

Selling my house whilst living in Edinburgh was a daunting prospect but I should not have worried. The communications between both parties was easy and the sale of my property went through without any hitches.

Diane Legget

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