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This property is no longer on the market

7 bedroom detached house

This property is no longer on the market

7 bedroom detached house



Property features

  • Former Holiday Home of Charles Dickens
  • Substantial Grade II Listed Period Mansion House
  • Outstanding Sea, Bay & Coastal Views
  • Seven Bedrooms
  • Sea Facing Lounge & Bar
  • Sea Facing Dining Room
  • Function/Reception Room
  • Spacious Kitchen
  • Staff Quarters
  • Substantial Gardens

Property description

Bleak House commands one of the most prominent positions in Broadstairs - High up on the cliffs on the coast of Kent stands this historic mansion house, known far and wide as the seaside residence of the great novelist, Charles Dickens. This Grade II Listed house was built in 1801 and has to be one of the country's most renowned homes as here, in a small study looking straight out across the sea, Charles Dickens wrote the greater part of his most famous novel, David Copperfield. The current owners have extensively restored this amazing property which retains a multitude of grand and quirky features including the lower ground floor museum, with its prison cells, underground inn and old artefacts.


The house was originally known as Fort House as it was built as the residence of the Fort Captain during the Napoleonic Wars. This was one of Charles Dickens' favourite lodging houses during the summer months and here he wrote David Copperfield in 1851 and planned Bleak House, the novel. The building was renamed many years after the book was published. The lower ground floor has been retained as a Smugglers Museum, the mahogany grand staircase and some fireplaces are original.

Access to the museum is via a glazed wooden door located in the inner hallway adjacent to the kitchen. There are steps leading down to the lower ground level. As you enter the museum there are many quirky features and artefacts from smugglers to the Napoleonic War. There are original prison cells and white painted arrows on the floor, directing you to the safe exit which finishes in an inner lobby at the opposite end of the kitchen from where you started.

The property is to be sold to include all fixtures, fittings and artefacts if required, less personal effects. The property currently operates successfully as a Visit England accredited 5 star Bed & Breakfast and Wedding Venue.


The main entrance to the property is via a brick porch with arched opening to an oversized solid wooden door with leaded light finish.

A large entrance lobby which has original wooden flooring and glazed leaded light wooden double doors leading to the reception hall.

26' 9" x 12' 1" (8.15m x 3.68m) A grand reception hall with doors leading to the principle reception rooms and a further door to an inner hallway leading to the North side of the property. This reception hall has highly decorative ceilings, incorporating period mouldings, picture rails and arched doorways. Straight ahead is a grand galleried staircase to the upper levels and beyond the staircase, there is a further door leading into a shower room and w.c. Within the central area of the hall, there is a period fireplace with solid wood surround, the floors are natural wood and there is a period style radiator.

25' 10" x 19' 10" (7.87m x 6.05m) A stunning sea facing dual aspect room with various sash windows and doors leading to the upper terrace. There are deep coved and highly decorative ceilings with mouldings and picture rails, a grand fireplace with a coal effect gas fire basket, various radiators, high skirting and solid wood floors.

30' x 19' 4" (9.14m x 5.89m) A beautiful room with various sash windows overlooking the gardens and sea. To the far end of this room, there is a large decorative archway and counter forming the bar which has various period coloured leaded light windows to the side and a door to the exterior. Within this room there is a period fireplace with overmantle, picture rails, deep coved ceilings, ceiling rose, high skirting, radiators, solid wood floors and a door leading into an inner hallway with the kitchen beyond.

29' 8" x 18' 4" (9.04m x 5.59m) A substantial dual aspect room for entertaining with various large sash windows to the rear and side. There are deep coved ceilings, solid wooden floors, two feature archways with doors leading back into the main hallway and a fitted raised seating area. This room also has a large period fireplace with fire basket and tiled hearth.

A double walk in shower cubicle and pedestal wash hand basin. The walls are part tiled and there is a vented radiator. Either side of this room there are doors leading to a separate w.c and understairs cloaks cupboard and boiler room.

A period w.c. with high level cistern. There are part tiled walls, period coved ceiling and dado rails.

Adjacent to the shower room is a boiler room housing a wall mounted boiler and a further door leading to a large cloaks cupboard.

This inner hallway has carpet floors, a secondary staircase leading to the upper levels and doors to the utility room, dining room and family kitchen.

29' 7" x 24' (9.02m x 7.32m) A large fitted kitchen with a separate informal dining area. This is a dual aspect room with various windows to the side and rear offering sea views. An extensive range of fitted wall and base units with a butler sink and a central island incorporating an additional circular bowl sink and drainer. There are ceiling downlights, natural wood flooring, a large ceiling skylight and an informal dining area to the far end. There are doors to a sea facing courtyard and further doors leading to a central courtyard, the museum on the lower ground level and to the lobby of the entrance to the North side of the property.

Room currently utilised as an office with sink, utility and storage facilities.


A grand galleried staircase with carpet tread stairs leading to a half landing with large leaded light windows to the rear. The large main landing has highly decorative ceilings, a ceiling rose and picture rails. This area is carpeted, there are various radiators and to the far end is another staircase leading to the upper level flatlet and ground floor level (kitchen location).

19' 9" x 17' 4" (6.02m x 5.28m) A sea facing principle bedroom with various windows overlooking the beaches and coast. This room has decorative coved ceilings, ceiling rose, picture rails, carpet flooring, high skirting, a period marble fireplace with overmantle and doors to the dressing room and ensuite bathroom.

16' 5" x 6' (5.00m x 1.83m) This room has fitted shelving and hanging rails, carpet flooring, ceiling downlights and a glazed window overlooking the sea.

14' 1" x 12' (4.29m x 3.66m) A lavish bathroom with a 'pearlised' effect raised bath, bidet, close coupled w.c and vanity wash hand basin. The ceilings are coved with ceiling rose and picture rails, there is a radiator, tiled floors and glazed windows with a centralised glazed door leading onto a parapet.

Accessed via the ensuite bathroom. A decked area with space for a bistro style table and chairs and offering outstanding sea views across Viking Bay and Broadstairs.

19' 2" x 13' 9" (5.84m x 4.19m) This bedroom has large sash windows to the front offering sea views and views over the beaches. This room has decorative coved ceilings with picture rails, carpet flooring, recessed cupboards and a period style cast iron fireplace.

18' x 11' (5.49m x 3.35m) A dual aspect bedroom with windows to the side and rear. There is a door leading to a parapet offering sea views. The ceilings are coved with ceiling rose, the floors are carpeted, there are picture rails, a radiator and a large built in shower cubicle.

13' 10" x 11' (4.22m x 3.35m) This bedroom has a period cast iron fireplace, carpet flooring, sash windows to the rear, period coved ceiling with ceiling rose, picture rails and a radiator. Door to:

Fitted with a period style w.c. with wooden shaped seat and low level cistern. There is a wash hand basin, shower cubicle and glazed window to the rear.

A white suite comprising roll top claw foot bath with shower attachment to mixer taps and pedestal wash hand basin. There is a period cast iron fireplace, a glazed window to the rear, recessed cupboards, coved ceilings with ceiling rose, picture rails, towel rails and ceramic tiled floors.

A white close coupled w.c, ceramic tiled floors, period style radiator, part tiled walls, decorative coved ceilings and a glazed window to the rear.

15' 10" x 10' 7" (4.83m x 3.23m) This room is where Charles Dickens got his inspiration for his famous novel David Copperfield. Decorated with a wealth of personal items from his day, including the writing desk he sat at which is situated in front of the large bay window overlooking the sea.


As you approach the second floor, there is a window on the half landing offering a sea view. At the top of the stairs, there is a door leading into the upper three bedroom suite. The hallway area has coved ceilings, carpet flooring, a radiator, a built in cupboard and steps leading to a door which takes you onto the flat roof terrace.

13' x 10' 1" (3.96m x 3.07m) This bedroom has various sash windows to the rear with sea views, carpet flooring, coved ceilings and a radiator.

14' 1" x 10' 7" (4.29m x 3.23m) This room has a sash window to the front which overlooks the beach and has coved ceilings, picture rails, a feature fireplace with overmantle mirror and carpet flooring.

14' 6" x 12' (4.42m x 3.66m) This room has a large bow shaped window to the side offering superb sea views, coved ceilings, a period cast iron fireplace and carpet flooring.

A white suite comprising raised panelled multi jet bath with shower attachment to mixer taps, close coupled w.c. and pedestal wash hand basin. There is a large sash window overlooking the sea, the walls are part tiled, the ceilings are coved, there is a built in linen cupboard housing a wall mounted boiler and a radiator.


38' x 10' 5" (11.61m x 3.18m) Over-all measurement incorporating living and bedroom areas and featuring roof-lights and wooden flooring. There is access from the inner courtyard and the parking area. There is also a door leading into the garage and a door leading into a wet room which has a shower, pedestal wash hand basin and close-coupled w.c.

6.83m x 6.58m (22' 5" x 21' 7") Garage with wooden double doors and access to two large store/utility rooms. Door leading to internal courtyard.

Extensive gardens to the property which are mainly lawned. There is a grand raised terrace with concrete ballustrades and wrought iron gates leading to a side courtyard. There is also parking to the North Side.

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Property reference 13443305. The information displayed about this property comprises a property advertisement. makes no warranty as to the accuracy or completeness of the advertisement or any linked or associated information, and has no control over the content. This property advertisement does not constitute property particulars. The information is provided and maintained by Terence Painter Estate Agents - Broadstairs. Please contact the selling agent directly to obtain any information which may be available under the terms of The Energy Performance of Buildings (Certificates and Inspections) (England and Wales) Regulations 2007 or the Home Report if in relation to a residential property in Scotland.

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