A historic windmill within the English countryside that appeared alongside Dick Van Dyke and a magical flying automotive within the 1968 film “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” has gone up on the market.
The black-and-white Cobstone Mill, in Buckinghamshire, England, simply exterior London, is a part of a property that additionally features a primary home, about 37 acres of land and a swimming pool. It may very well be yours for 9 million kilos (about $11.4 million).
The mill is believed to have been constructed round 1816 and was used to grind cereal till 1873, in keeping with Savills, the true property agency promoting the property. Earlier than the windmill may very well be used as a film location it wanted substantial renovations. The property had been broken by a fireplace and, in keeping with native media reviews on the time, squatters had been residing in it.
Within the movie, which was loosely based mostly on a kids’s guide by the James Bond creator Ian Fleming, the windmill served as the house for Mr. Van Dyke’s character, a nutty, widowed inventor named Caractacus Potts, who lives along with his kids, Jeremy and Jemima. Collectively along with his love curiosity, Actually Delicious, performed by Sally Ann Howes, and his automotive, named Chitty Chitty Bang Bang for its distinctive engine sounds, they journey to the land of Vulgaria to battle the tyrant Baron Bomburst.
However the windmill’s movie trade connections didn’t finish there.
In 1971, the actress Hayley Mills purchased the property at public sale along with her husband, Roy Boulting, a movie director. Ms. Mills wrote in regards to the first time she noticed the property in her 2021 memoir, “Ceaselessly Younger.”
“I acknowledged it directly as the youngsters’s residence in ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’ and it was love at first sight,” she wrote, envisioning herself and her husband watching their youngster play within the afternoon solar, regardless that the property was “completely impractical.”
Mr. Boulting then stunned her by shopping for it at public sale for 30,000 kilos (about $38,000). “It was loopy, utterly, marvelously loopy,” she wrote. Whereas she hoped the windmill would develop into her dream residence within the nation, and whereas she began renovating the property to make it livable, the windmill’s renovations weren’t completed, in keeping with the autobiography, and the couple later divorced.
The property was later owned by David Brown, an English industrialist and a former proprietor of the automaker Aston Martin. Within the Eighties, the property was bought to the present proprietor, in keeping with Stephen Christie-Miller, one of many realtors on the itemizing.
“It’s such a landmark while you drive by the valley,” Mr. Christie-Miller mentioned, “It dominates.”
The windmill is a Grade II-listed constructing, which implies it’s thought of of nationwide significance and is legally protected against being demolished or considerably altered with out particular permission.
Although the value tag is steep, there was curiosity within the property, Mr. Christie-Miller mentioned, particularly for the normally sluggish month of August throughout which many potential consumers are on trip.
“So many individuals realize it,” he mentioned, including that he was planning to point out the windmill to 2 potential consumers on Wednesday and had already confirmed it to 1 couple who have been, he mentioned, “very eager.”
Since peaking in August final yr, home costs in Britain have begun to drop. Final month, costs fell 3.8 p.c in contrast with a yr earlier, in keeping with Nationwide Constructing Society, the steepest annual drop in additional than a decade.
Between the windmill and the home, the property has six bedrooms and 4 bogs, in keeping with the itemizing. The windmill’s sails have been restored prior to now 18 months, in keeping with Savills.
With views over the close by countryside, “the windmill itself can be a beautiful place to have an workplace,” Mr. Christie-Miller mentioned, however added, “not that you simply’d get any work executed.”
It’s not simply “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” followers who could be excited. The windmill seems to be over the village of Turville, the place scenes from the Nineteen Nineties English sitcom “Vicar of Dibley” have been filmed.
Mr. Christie-Miller mentioned the itemizing stands out in his 40-year profession. “It comes up as soon as in a technology,” he mentioned. “It was final available on the market in 1988. The subsequent particular person will most likely personal it for one more 30 years.”