Offbeat

By Hayley Pugh


This historic 45-room castle worth £2.5 million could be yours for just a fiver.

Orchardton Castle, on the Scottish Riviera, is being raffled off by owner Susan DeVere, after repeated attempts to sell the stunning home failed.

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The property, built in the 1880’s, has been valued at around £2.5 million and contains 17 bedrooms, three self-sufficient flats, a 20-seat cinema, drawing room, music room, games room, and an art studio.

It also comes with five acres of land and stunning views across Orchardton Bay to England and according to the owner, can be rented out for an eye-watering £2,500 per night.

Remarkably tickets for the draw, which closes this month, on May 18, cost just £5 and the prize comes with no strings attached including no mortgage, no stamp duty and no legal fees.

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Susan, a mum-of-one and an author from London, hopes to sell 550,000 tickets.

She is looking for a smaller home nearer to her mum so plans to donate any extra cash to several charities, including children’s charity Rainbow Trust.

Susan, who bought the castle back in 2003, decided to raffle the property off after meeting many people with good intentions to buy it who couldn’t afford it.

She said: “With so much natural beauty and history Orchardton gripped me immediately.

“I found it to be a magical, tranquil and healing place; the castle and its lands have their own micro-climate due to the Gulf Stream and the sheltered bay, we even have a palm tree.

“The competition is a great way to raise money for important causes and I only taking enough to pay off the mortgage and get somewhere closer to my mother.

“If you win you will be offered a week at Orchardton to decide if you want to accept the prize or to take a cash prize instead.

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“Orchardton could be put to so many good uses, but I understand that some people will want to just sell the prize as it is such high value or take a cash prize.

“I will be happy to introduce the winner to the property and to discuss the ample opportunities for businesses Orchardton possesses.

“It would also make a  fantastic home for several families.”

Orchardton is within easy reach of Scotland’s two largest cities, Edinburgh and Glasgow, and London can be reached in four hours by train

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Orchardton has a colourful history, having being used as a stately home, a hotel, a school, and an artists’ commune.

One of its founders, William Douglas, a reputed smuggler, is said to have buried treasure on the property.