Downton Abbey Envy Alive and Well at Banker Country Homes
As it's only January and Deutsche Bank is already predicting thousands more banker investment redundancies in 2013, we'd like to draw your attention to a few impressive financial services residences by way of covetous distraction. Notably, they don't generally belong to bankers: working for a hedge fund is far more lucrative. Deep in the British countryside, the financial services aristocracy owns some impressive country homes.
1. Chilworth Manor, Guildford
Owned by: Graham Wrigley
Graham Wrigley, effective lord of the manor at Chilworth in Surrey, had a long and auspicious career in private equity with Permira Advisors before re-orienting and becoming an adjunct professor at INSEAD business school with a focus on economic development in low income countries. Chilworth Manor was sold in 2005, when it was on the market for an asking price of £3.5m. It features in the Domesday Book and was once owned by the Bishop of Bayeux. It includes 40 acres of parkland, a library and a walled garden, and is only 35 miles from London.
Photographs can be viewed here.
2. Eastbach Court, Bicknor
Owned by: Crispin Odey
Crispin Odey of Odey Asset Management is one of the UK's leading and highest performing hedge fund managers. Despite having what he describes as a 'wastrel' for a father, Odey has amassed a fortune of £455m according to the Sunday Times. Odey has spent a porton of this fortune on Eastbach Court, a large 18th century house in Gloucestershire which was once owned by the Machen family, the main landowners thereabouts in the 1700s. Odey drew attention to Eastbach when he applied for planning permission to build a £150k sandstone chicken coop at the house in September 2012.
3. Broughton Grange, Oxfordshire
Owned by: Stephen Hester
Stephen Hester, chief executive of RBS, is also owner of Broughton Grange, a 350 acre estate in Oxfordshire. Described as a 'Victorian Cotswoldian Villa,' Broughton Grange is particularly renown for its delightful gardens, which Hester reportedly employs eight full time gardeners to attend to. There is also a large tree house.
You can see photographs of Broughton Grange here and in the links above.
4. Rowler Estate, Croughton, Northhamptonshire
Owned by: Ian Wace
Ian Wace, co-founder of Marshall Wace Asset Management, bought the Rowler Estate in Crowler, Northamptonshire for an alleged £20m in 2006. The estate is said to include a manor house, a private lake, a commercial farm, a trout farm, stables, a water-bottling plant and other facilities, as well as its own abattoir and a bowling alley disguised as a fake medieval tower.
You can see a photograph of the Rowler Estate here.
5. Testbourne Estate, Longparish, Hampshire
Owned by: Tim Tacchi
Tim Tacchi, the low profile founding partner of global macro fund TT International, owns considerable swathes of land around the village of Longparish in Hampshire. This includes Testbourne House, an equestrian centre. Tacchi bought much of the farmland associated with the Longparish estate before 2007 and then built a new (large) home on the previous Testbourne House, equipped with underground swimming pool.
Unfortunately, there are no photographs.