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Haunted house up for sale

PUBLISHED: 00:46 10 October 2001 | UPDATED: 15:18 03 March 2010

COUNTRYSIDE houses often come with tales of history and occasional hauntings but a Melton property now on the market may have more than its fair share of ghosts and ghouls.

COUNTRYSIDE houses often come with tales of history and occasional hauntings but a Melton property now on the market may have more than its fair share of ghosts and ghouls.

As the property boom continues across Suffolk a former mortuary is now commanding a £150,000 price tag.

The dilapidated building, once used as a store for dead bodies, is being offered for sale as part of the exclusive development of the former Victorian psychiatric hospital at Melton Park.

Despite the mortuary needing extensive work to make it inhabitable, which could cost a further £100,000, property experts are confident it can be transformed into a plush three-bedroom home.

The development has already attracted high-fliers and movie makers and interest has already been brisk in the detached single-storey building after it went on the market at the end of last week.

The mortuary will need extensive renovation, possibly costing a further £100,000, but includes an atrium across the proposed sitting and dining areas and Gothic or church style windows..

Clare Foster-Clarke, sales manager with Bidwells which has offices across the country, believes whoever moves in will soon forget about the bodies the mortuary once housed even though some potential buyers have enquired about ghosts.

"Nowadays, rather than ripping old buildings down, people are looking to hang on to local history and culture.

"It's literally a shell and an opportunity for development. But it's better to re-use historic buildings, although some people may not like the idea of living in a morgue," she said.

"Some people may be put off, but nowadays, especially with the Buffy the Vampire Slayer cult interest, I'd say it could be quite fashionable.

New executive homes at Melton Park are currently being snapped up for prices as high as £1 million by stockbrokers, doctors, entrepreneurs and even a film director from the USA.

Linda Druce, sales representative at Melton Park, said: "We have tiny two bedroom homes to very large five bedroom plus properties here costing £99,000 to £1 million.

"The site was an old psychiatric hospital dating back to the 1850s. The land was acquired in 1996 and 50 homes renovated, including old wards.

"The mortuary had a big marble slab and a blackboard in there with weights of different parts of the body on when we went in."

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