Style and splendour.
AS a boy Trevor Thorne regularly scaled the walls of Embleton Hall to scrump an apple or two from its orchard. Little did the dairy farmer's son know that one day he would come to own the stunning Georgian country house near the village of Longframlington, Northumberland.
Born in the shadow of the hall at North End Farm, owned by his family for the previous 80 years, Trevor was no stranger to the chariss matic property and its beautiful surroundings.
When the opportunity came to buy the hall in 1986, he and wife Judy jumped at the chance. With a vision to establish a country house hotel, they set about restoring Embleton Hall to its former glory.
Trevor, 58, said: "When we first bought the hall Judy and I lived in the North Wing. We then set about converting the hall and moved into the converted stable block where we've lived for the past 26 years.
"Converting Embleton Hall was a challenge to begin with. Luckily it was a nice building and had been well looked after."
Built in 1730 by Thomas Embleton, Embleton Hall is steeped in history. The property was bought by the Fenwick family in 1780, whose descendants lived there until Trevor and Judy acquired it.
"We used to visit the hall as we were dairy farmers on the estate and used to deliver milk. The Fenwicks were very nice people and had a good relationships with their tenants."
Set in 3.16 acres of mature grounds, which have also been brought back to life thanks to Trevor's love of gardening, the property has a wealth of period features. The hall has a striking entrance and reception hall with period staircase, and magnificent drawing room with decorative ceiling cornicing and deep skirtings.
There is a morning room and dining room with expansive views.
The Georgian part of the hall includes commercial kitchens, three bedroom suites and the former library, which has views over the gardens and coast. The property offers fine examples of architecture from different periods including a Georgian timber panelled sitting room and large Victorian rooms in the south wing. It also includes 13 en suite bedrooms.
Restoring the property was a real labour of love. Trevor said: "It was a lot of hard work. We were restoring the house to its former glory and trying to enhance what was already there. Over the years I've gone around country house sales and bought furniture that complements the property. We've also done a lot of work outside, winning back the walled garden and making the grounds much more attractive."
The grounds include woodland, lawns, a grass tennis court, croquet lawn, and ha-ha.
Sons Harry, 24, and Sam, 20, occasionally help out at the hotel during holidays, along with Judy, 60, who teaches at Newcastle's Royal Victoria Infirmary. However, Trevor has decided it's time to retire and allow someone else to enjoy Embleton Hall.
"It would make a wonderful family home," he said. "It's a very large property, but at the same time, it's not too large that you can't enjoy it and feel the warmth from it. It's been a lovely safe environment in which to raise the boys and Longframlington is a lovely village."
Bringing the hall back to life has given Trevor great pleasure. "It's been wonderful to be part of the hall's rebirth - to see the gardens looking so nice and the buildings in good order. I do a lot of gardening. I grow vegetables and will miss that.
"We've had some lovely customers over the years. We're hoping to remain in the stable block and see out our days there."
Embleton Hall is for sale through Strutt & Parker at a guide price of pounds 875,000 or in two separate lots, tel: 01670 516123.
RESTORED TO GLORY Trevor Thorne in his stunning Georgian home Embleton Hall with its beautiful period rooms, modern conveniences and lovely large gardens