An enchanting historic country house

Naish Priory presents an opportunity to enjoy all the benefits of an historic country house with the flexibility and manageability of a family home. The house and its wonderfully romantic gardens are approached through ornate iron gates. The appealing accommodation is arranged over three floors. During the 19th century the Victorians added a wing to the south west, a staircase tower and restored a second story to the central section.

The property is Listed Grade I and believed originally to have been a chantry rather than a priory. As well as providing delightful family accommodation it is a house of immense character, with a sense of English history throughout. The exterior has fan tracery, octagonal chimneys, carved stone gargoyles and corbelled heads. The rare“Beast of Botreaux” corbel by the sealed doorway is significant. There are also flagstone floors, high beamed ceilings, arched stone door surrounds, medieval panelled doors, stone mullion windows with leaded lights and a fine oriel window. The northern door sports a Beauchamp Knot carved motif, and above the Coach House, a stone carving of two roses, surmounted by a large Tudor Rose and weathered crown, can be found.

There is an excellent balance of accommodation with all rooms benefitting from views across the enchanting gardens or neighbouring countryside. The property was successfully altered and enlarged in the 19th century without compromising the character of the 14th century house. The welcoming hall with its arched stone door frames opens into the library, complete with huge original 14th century entrance door. This room is flanked by the morning room and the drawing room with a sealed carved stone door to the garden behind the bookcase. The dining room is ideally positioned between the drawing room and the kitchen/breakfast room, adjacent to the spacious rear hall which has a door to the rear drive. The practical rooms of the scullery and boot room are next to the kitchen and both have doors to the garden.

On the first floor, the principal bedroom has an en suite bathroom and the former chapel with its squint and its vaulted ceiling is a stunning and most enjoyable room. Of particular note is the oriel window which provides a romantic focus to the first floor landing. There are four further bedrooms and a family bathroom on this floor. The second floor provides two more bedrooms, a shower room and an office.

To the south west of the house are the stables and carriage house, all of which are accessed by a rear drive. The thatched stables incorporate a garage and three loose boxes plus a tack room – all with the original divides. The coach house is arranged as a garage/workshop, apple/wood store and garden store.

This property has 2.41 acres of land.


The delightful gardens and grounds extend to 2.41 acres and form an important part of the property.

In the best traditions of the country garden, expansive lawns with colourful borders nestle beneath wonderful trees and combine to create a most romantic and enjoyable set of garden rooms. Approached through tall stone gate piers with ornate iron gates, the gravel drive expands to form a parking/turning area to the east of the house and is bordered by a high stone wall and large lily pond complete with a fountain and Koi carp. A short flight of steps and a path leads beneath a lovely old Judas-tree to the house and formal gardens. Adjacent to house is the sheltered and sunny south facing terrace garden with its ancient flagstone stone seating area and lawn bordered by established Magnolia Grandiflora and pear trees, with deep colourful and scented beds of climbing roses, hydrangea, begonia, lilies, camellias and other perennials. From here stone piers with ornate metal gate open into the walled garden. At its centre a large level lawn, ideal for croquet, has deep established flower borders to all sides and incorporates a seating area with a wisteria and grape vine covered pergola and a gate to the pond garden, as well as a flight of historic stone steps set into a bank leading to the stables.

A further set of tall gate piers opens into the garden with the arbour of intertwined beeches (the Beech Walk), bordered by deep flower beds with roses, lilies, geraniums, peonies and rhododendrons. An arch in the tall hedge leads into the Smoketree Garden with its weeping birch crab apple and superb smoketrees. A row of tall poplar trees runs along the southern boundary and borders delightful open countryside. The final area of garden is the former orchard with its remaining fruit trees, beech, oak trees and a bluebell wood in spring time. This area of garden is to the south of the outbuildings, cottages and a small kitchen garden with raised beds and a small wooden greenhouse, olive and fig trees with area of hard standing suitable for a larger greenhouse. The garden affords any number of quiet and private seating areas giving different perspectives of the house, the garden and neighbouring countryside; be it from the south facing terrace beside the house, vine covered pergola, or lawns.


The property is situated on the northern edge of the picturesque Somerset village of East Coker, near the Somerset/Dorset border, tucked away at the end of a no through country lane with good access to bridleways and footpaths. With a distance of 2.7 miles to the south of Yeovil , the administrative centre, and 8.2 miles west of the Abbey town of, Sherborne, Naish Priory offers access to a range of shops, recreational, educational and cultural amenities. The village has a primary school, farm shop, village hall, cafe and 15th century “Helyar Arms” public house. The area is renowned for an excellent choice of schools including Sherborne, Sherborne School for Girls, Leweston, Millfield, Hazelgrove and Perrott Hill Preparatory Schools and Kings Bruton. Sporting facilities include horse racing at Wincanton, Bath, Salisbury and Exeter and water sports, fishing and sailing along the Jurassic Coast, approximately 20 miles away, as well as sailing on Sutton Bingham reservoir, approximately 2 miles away. Local hunts include the Portman, Blackmore and Sparkford Vale, South & West Wilts and Cattistock. Shooting locally is available on a commercial let day basis and local golf clubs include Yeovil Golf Club and Cricket St Thomas Golf Club.

Communications are excellent: London can be reached by the A303 and M3 or by rail on a good service of 19 trains per day from Yeovil Junction (2 miles) to Waterloo, taking approximately 2 hours 20 minutes. There is also a service from Castle Cary (19 miles) to London Paddington, taking approximately 90 minutes. Local airports include Bristol (44 miles) and Exeter (42 miles).

East Coker is, famed for its natural beauty, rich in fine architecture and pretty thatched cottages and , winding through open fields and hedgerows, its ancient sunken lanes, “shuttered with branches” as described by Nobel Prize winning poet T S Eliot, whose ashes lie in the 12th century church of St Michael and All Angels. Another of East Coker’s famous sons, William Dampier (1651 - 1715), was a buccaneer, explorer, brilliant cartographer, hydrographer, navigator and naturalist. He explored and studied as a child the village’s varied fields and plants around Naish and East Coker, Educated at King’s Bruton by his guardian, Captain Helyar of Coker Court, a Civil War hero and grandson of Archdeacon Helyar, who served as personal chaplain to Queen Elizabeth I. and the Fleet, Dampier circumnavigated the globe 3 times and was the first Englishman to set foot in” New Holland”” (now Australia). His vivid journals and discourses, meticulously documented new species of flora and fauna,, and he so accurately mapped winds and tides that his charts were still in use by the Royal Navy in 1931. Dampier collected botanical specimens for the newly formed (in 1660) Royal Society for Scientific Discovery. He described for the first time the concept of sub species, which he had noted among turtles in the Galapagos, inspiring Charles Darwin, Banks, Humboldt and Captain Cook, all of whom carried Dampier’s journals with them on their subsequent journeys. . He knew Pepys, introduced many new words into the English language and his experiences and writings inspired Swift’s “Gulliver’s Travels”and Defoe’s “Robinson Crusoe”. Coleridge’ Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner” and other works of literature.

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Other features

  • Stair hall, drawing room, morning room, dining room, library, ante room/rear hall, kitchen/breakfast room, scullery, boot room, cloakroom
  • First floor: Principal bedroom with bathroom, guest bedroom (former chapel), 4 further bedrooms, family bathroom, cloakroom
  • Second floor: Landing, 2 further bedrooms, shower room
  • Stables & Coach House: Two garages, loose boxes and tack room, apple and wood store
  • Gardens and Grounds:
  • Wonderful formal and informal gardens
  • About 2.41 acres
  • Two cottages available by separate negotiation

Other details

  • Floorplan
  • Map & Street View
Map View Street View
Ref: BAT220017

East Coker Somerset BA22

Guide Price

Ref: BAT220017

East Coker Somerset BA22

Guide Price