Cottage frozen in time - and said to be haunted


Old Crow Cottage was abandoned since 2009 and has been left to rot ever since.Inside the haunted cottage with tragic past which has been left to rot with more than 300 years of valuables...clothes, pictures, clocks all left untouched.

Old Crow Cottage in Willersley, Herefordshire, has been left frozen in time for years. A dress is still laid out on a bed, the dressing table is full of bottles of rose water and embrocation, and 1960s board games are laid out in the lounge.

So why has it been left like this, and does a home in this state have any value?
The 200-year-old cottage was once beautiful. It is Grade II-listed, and was once the village pub. However, in recent years the property has dramatically deteriorated. One of the seven rooms has been gutted by fire, and a second sits under a collapsed roof.

The last owner of the property is thought to be 72-year-old David Edward Penny, who died last October in a car crash on the road outside. However, although he lived in the property, he left much of it untouched.

The Daily Mail reported that when photographer Dan Circa ventured inside recently, he found many of the rooms had been abandoned for years. They were thick with dust, fallen masonry and cobwebs, and newspapers from the 1960s covered the floors in one room - showing how long it is since it was a fully-functioning home.

To add to the eerie history of the place, locals say they often see lights flickering on and off in the empty property - so many believe the place is haunted.

Why is it left like this?

No-one knows why the owners left the property like this. We know from other people who have left their properties untouched that the reasons are very varied. We reported last year on the man who lived in the house he was born in 79 years earlier. He took incredible care of the neat property, but told the press that he didn't feel the need to change anything after his parents and his brother died, and couldn't understand why other people were obsessed with new things

Then there was the clothes shop in Bowes Park in North London, which became a relic of the late 1990s, after the owner retired and couldn't bring themselves to pack everything away.

Does it have a value?

The value of this property has far less to do with the fact that it has been left untouched, and more to do with the terrible condition of the building. There are plenty of buyers who can see beyond the way that the previous owners lived in order to understand the potential of a property.

However, the fire and subsequent deterioration of the rest of the building means that the current owner has erected metal fences around the property as the structure is so unsound, and this is always going to be a major headache for anyone trying to get value out of the property.

When a home is in this condition, the value may lie in the land - which can be sold for development. However, if a building is listed it could make the process of demolition time-consuming and costly - not to mention the fact that it makes the decision to knock it down a particularly difficult one.

The alternative is for it to be taken on by someone with a passion for the project, who is happy to conserve a collapsing building, even where it costs far more than building a brand new home from scratch.

Those passionate people are not always easy to find, although if the current owner of this property put it up for sale, there's a decent chance they would find someone willing to take the project on, as it's in a very pretty village.

However, with this sort of property selling for around £450,000 in immaculate condition locally, and at least £250,000 of work required on a building in this sort of state, it's going to have to be keenly priced if the current owner ever wants sell up.

Inside the abandoned cottage

The cottage frozen in time

The cottage frozen in time