Earl selling Lake District mountain for £1.75m

Ruth Doherty

Lake District Mountain Up for Sale
Lake District Mountain Up for Sale

An aristocrat has put a UK mountain up for sale in order to pay off a large tax bill.

The Earl of Lonsdale, Hugh Lowther, placed the 2,850ft Lake District mountain, called Blencathra, on the market for £1.75 million.

The mountain has inspired writers from Wordsworth to Wainwright, and is one of England's top 10 highest peaks offering stunning views across the Lake District to Wales and Scotland. And now it's up for sale for the first time in 400 years, reports the Daily Mail.

Why? The earl says he needs to settle a £9 million tax bill from his father's inheritance, and didn't want to be forced to break up the Lonsdale Estate, which has been in his family for hundreds of years.


He told the BBC: "We don't want to make inroads into the core of the estate.

"And we don't want to have to evict tenanted farmers and other tenants and what have you from their houses so we can sell them."

Speaking to the Daily Telegraph, the earl continued: "We went through the pictures and furniture first.

"We sold a Turner for £1.4 million, a derelict farm steading and a couple of cottages which were vacant. And now Blencathra."

The paper adds that Blencathra is one of the most renowned landmarks in the fells, and is nicknamed 'Saddleback'. Even Samuel Taylor Coleridge was inspired to write about the mountain, and it was also a favourite of guide book author Alfred Wainwright.

There are reportedly a number of interested buyers, including an alliance of local community groups called the Friends of Blencathra, who have already secured pledges of £600,000.

They also have prominent UK mountaineer, Sir Chris Bonington, as their honorary patron.

Chris, who has climbed the mountain "at least 500 times", told the Daily Mail: "It's a magnificent gateway to the Lake District with so many routes to the top.

"I can't say much, but I have been in touch with two corporate backers who are very interested in helping."

Related articles

Mourners slammed for leaving piles of ashes in the Lake District

Boy, 9, falls 160ft off Lake District mountain - and escapes with a bruise