Grand estate set to be stripped of contents

PUBLISHED: 17:33 08 April 2016 | UPDATED: 17:33 08 April 2016

Brocket Hall ballroom

Brocket Hall ballroom

Archant

A Grade I listed estate at the centre of a financial quagmire looks set to be stripped of antiques, including tables, chandeliers and even a bath.

Lemsford-based Brocket Hall estate hit the headlines only last month after members of its golf club were told they could no longer play there unless they bought new memberships.

This followed the administrators of Brocket Hall International Limited announcing the sale of the leasehold businesses to

Brocket Hall (UK) Limited on March 14.

Two of the directors of the international company are also directors of the UK firm, formed in February this year.

The freehold for the estate is owned by the Trustees of The Brocket Hall Estate and Lord Charles Brocket said the lease for the contents of Brocket Hall was terminated in 2012 because rent had not been paid.

Lord Brocket told the WHT: “We said if you can’t pay the rent, we will have to remove the contents.”

Some of the contents have already been removed, however, there has been some dispute over whether other pieces can be taken amid claims that they form part of the house.

Lord Brocket has argued this is not the case, adding: “This is completely untrue.”

He sent in a renowned architect to carry out an inspection to confirm his standpoint and has taken advice from Welwyn Hatfield Council.

He added: “It’s pretty absurd the whole thing.

“The council said if you want a belt and braces approach why don’t you apply to remove them. If historical buildings say you can, remove them.”

A series of planning applications have since been drawn up with Howard Kruger, of the trustees, listed as an agent acting on behalf of Lord Brocket.

The applications ‘to remove various chattels from the building’ have been submitted to the borough council.

Lord Brocket said: “The items will go into the trustees’ storage depot. We would rent them out to someone else rather than give them to the Klostermann charity [Brocket Hall (UK) Ltd director Dieter Klostermann].

“Probably we will have to go to court and involve the police.”

For the full story see the Welwyn Hatfield Times.


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