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Homes Under The Hammer's Martin Roberts is not happy as period property stripped of original features and turned into flats

Wales Online logo Wales Online 27/09/2021 Joanne Ridout

Finding a four-story period property not only intact but with no major problems and bursting with original features in an auction catalogue can be quite a rare find in some parts of the country.

This gem of a four-story family home could easily just be bought and moved into, with no major problems that Homes Under The Hammer presenter Martin Roberts could see when he visited.

In fact, it was such a gem this property had him exclaiming 'Oh my golly gosh!', and it wasn't hard for viewers to see why.

READ MORE: More amazing Welsh homes, renovations, interiors and property news here

The house literally oozed period details that can be hard to find in a house over 100 years old.

Everywhere the camera turned there was a feature to find and love.

Fancy decorative cornicing, solid marble fireplaces, stripped original wood flooring, picture rails, deep skirtings, ceiling roses, original wood panelled doors and even a large and impressive chandelier in the huge first floor room that spanned the width of the home.

The love in Martin's eyes was plain to see, and he felt a real connection to the former family home.

He said: "It has an atmosphere like an old fashioned, glorious London house, charming. It's really getting to me this house - in a good way!"

The ground floor had, as well as features from the past to impress including fireplaces, an open-plan double reception room and kitchen at the rear that led into a compact garden.

Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59,

As Martin pointed out, the house in Clapham Junction, London, was built on valuable land so the house was taller and narrower to optimise the space but not the amount of land it sat on .

Up to the first floor and into the largest room, the one with the dazzling chandelier that so caught Martin's eye, and his admiration for the house continued.

More bedrooms on this and the next floor up until the surprise gem on the top floor; a huge four-piece family bathroom with characterful exposed brick wall and large spa bath.

Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59,

A staircase from the ground floor led to the cellar which was yet to be converted and just used as a storage space.

But in the garden Martin's love bubble burst as he voiced what he thought was probably the inevitable as the house went to auction with a guide price of £1.15m

Martin said: "This unfortunately will fall into the category of a house that someone will want to covert into flats, which is what most of the houses around here have had done to them.

"It is a shame really but financially it is probably the thing that makes the most sense. I am a little but sad that this beautiful house is going to be co verted into flats."

Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59,

Property developer Sherlewin bagged the house when the hammer went down at £1.2m and when the pair met, Martin's worst fears were confirmed and surely a little piece of his heart broke.

The family home was to be flats with Sherlewin explaining that although its unusual to find a complete house, flats make more sense for the area and for the profit margin, it's too big for a family. His house, his choice.

With an estimated budget of between £300,000 and £400,000 and a timescale of about 12 months, the house was about to begin a new chapter in its long life.

The programme returned 21 months later and there's hardly a single original feature to be found inside, maybe a glimpse of a skirting board here and there, and probably the staircase, although there's no guarantee of that.

Almost everything has been stripped out and three highly contemporary flats created.

Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59,

On the first floor there's a one-bed apartment with open-plan living at the front in that massive room that once boasted a beautiful fireplace and Martin's fancy chandelier.

Up a small flight of stairs to a double bedroom and bathroom at the rear.

All the decor is white, neutral and black and the choice of fixtures and fittings Sherlewin says are high end throughout the conversion development.

This has pushed the budget to probably about half a million pounds and there is still stuff to do.

Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59,

The three-bed planned for the ground floor and basement was still a work in progress due to having to excavate down in the cellar. When the programme returned this largest of the flats was at second fix stage with Sherlewin estimating another two months of work to complete it

Up the flight of stairs from the first floor and to a two-bed abode spread over the top two floors. The former spacious bathroom is now a bedroom with a feature Juliet balcony offering views out over the London rooftops.

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With the purchase price and budget combined, Sherlewin's total investment at this property was £1.7m and he was happy to overspend to create a premium finish.

The estate agent loved the new contemporary feel to the old house and estimated the values of the three units to be £950,000 for the three-bed once completed, £750,000 for the upper floors two-bed and £550,000 for the first floor one-bed, making a pre-tax profit of £500,000.

Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59, © BBC Homes Under The Hammer series 24, episode 59,

Any advice from Sherlewin for any would-be property developers looking to get involved with such a complex project like his?

He says: "You've just got to love it because there's a lot of dramas around, you have to be excited to solve them because then it's a very satisfying project done."

This Homes Under The Hammer story is in series 24, episode 59, currently still available to watch on BBC iPlayer.

Do you prefer this property before or after the conversion - do you love period features or prefer the contemporary look? Let us know in the comments section below.

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