Livingstone’s Scottish “holiday” home on sale for £1m

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A MANSION regularly visited by legendary Scots explorer David Livingstone has gone on the market for £1m.

Livingstone’s visits to Limefield House, West Lothian, were so regular the owner even built a replica of the Victoria Falls nearby.

And a sycamore tree planted by Livingstone’s own hand still stands in the five acres of grounds.

The house in the 1930s
The house in the 1930s

 

Now the 200-year-old property, in West Calder, which boasts eight bedrooms and three west wings, is on sale for £975,000.

It was one of Livingstone’s favourite places to go when he returned to Scotland from the expeditions that made him famous around the world.

Limefield House was built in 1805
Limefield House was built in 1805

 

He travelled across the Kalahari Desert, up the Zambezi River and even discovered the Victoria Falls in Zambia.

His close friend, and wealthy entrepreneur, James Young owned Limefield House, which was built in 1805 for a judge..

Young, who made his fortune developing the shale oil industry in the area, bought the residence in 1855.

The mansion is on the market for £1m
The mansion is on the market for £1m

 

He became close friends with Livingstone after the pair met at Anderson’s College in Glasgow, and he went on to fund many of the explorer’s trips abroad.

Young even built an exact replica of the famous Victoria Falls, discovered by Livingstone on one of his African expeditions, near to the house. When created, the falls were within the grounds of the property but are now on public land.

The renowned explorer enjoyed visiting Limefield so much that he even planted a Sycamore tree in front of the house – which still stands today.

The house still retains some periodical features
The house still retains some periodical features

 

The mansion has only had four occupants, including the current owners who bought the property in 1999.

Previous reports suggest that the house is haunted by several ghosts, including the apparition of a dog.

Rumour has it that a black Labrador has been seen wandering the corridors, as well as a man looking for a little girl who once drowned in a nearby stream.

Livingstone planted a Sycamore tree in the grounds - which is still there today
Livingstone planted a Sycamore tree in the grounds – which is still there today

 

Rettie & Co, the agents selling the house, describe it as a “rare opportunity to acquire an elegant B-listed Georgian mansion with important historical links”.

The property boasts adjoining offices and self-contained residential suites which provide “an extra source of income or further domestic accommodation”.

A replica of Victoria Falls was built in memory of Livingstone
A replica of Victoria Falls was built in memory of Livingstone

 

The house, despite being refurbished by the current owners, retains many of its original features.

The impressive staircase is adorned with ornate Victorian bannisters – the very same that James Young had installed when he lived there.

The legendary Scots explorer, David Livingstone
The legendary Scots explorer, David Livingstone

 

A spokeswoman for Rettie & Co said: “It is easy to see why the house has had so few owners in its 200 year history.

“Rarely do houses of such ‘personality’ come on the market, particularly on the west wide of Edinburgh.

“Now recently restored to provide all the contemporary facilities required for the 21st century, it will delight all who view and enthral its eventual new owner.

“With close historical connections to David Livingstone and James Young, custodianship of Limefield is a privilege open to few but the envy of many.”

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