Most bizarre places to live in the UK
The UK is full of weird and wonderful locations. From rural countryside pods through to urban apartments with unusual features, there are a lot of unique properties across the UK.
1. ‘Swiss Chalet’ – Banks of The River Thames
This property includes a 70ft man-made beach with 40 tonnes of sand and underfloor heating to mimic sun-kissed sand. Located next to Hampton Court Palace, this house is fit for a king with a 24-carat gold bathroom, Koi carp pond and an old submarine door that leads into a spa complex. The building itself was shipped over to the UK from Switzerland in three pieces in 1882. After falling into disrepair, it was bought by Spatial architect, Myck Djurberg, who has spent nearly £5m transforming it into what it is today. If cannons, Swarovski crystals and gold-leaf parquet flooring are your thing then this is the place for you!
2. Scott Hall Farm – M62
There has long been a myth surrounding why this house is slap-bang in the middle of the M-62. It was rumoured that former owner, Ken Wild, refused to sell his land when plans were made for the motorway. The truth is that a geological quirk meant that particular part of land was too steep to build on. The farm is now part of Yorkshire Water’s ‘Beyond Nature’ initiative to support the land, water and wildlife surrounding it.
3. Alex Michaelis’ House – Shepherd’s Bush
You’d kind of expect something unusual from the home of an internationally-acclaimed architect and Alex Michaelis, of Michaelis Boyd, doesn’t disappoint. This circular house has been designed “with children in mind”, according to the architect and features a pool with overhanging kinetic sculpture, a slide that sits alongside the staircase and a fireman’s pole for when stairs become just too much to contend with.
4. 19th Century Windmill – Swaffham Prior, Cambridge
With a guide price of £675,000, this windmill is more luxurious than bizarre, however it’s unique structure and traditional features make it a pretty fascinating place to live. It is thought that the windmill was last used for its intended purpose back in the 1920s and has undergone considerable renovation since then. There are now three lozenge-shaped pods attached to the windmill itself, giving it a modern twist whilst keeping its traditional structure in-tact. It also provides a much more open-plan feel, with panoramic views of the Cambridgeshire countryside.
5. Converted Water Tower – Kenilworth, Warwickshire
This 1930s concrete tower has been transformed into a luxury 6-bed home. Designed by a German architect, the imposing 50ft tower is known as “Kenilworth’s second castle” by locals. Although it has been totally transformed inside, it still retains some original features, including a central spiral staircase, depth gauges and exposed stonework. There’s also a spacious roof terrace for spying on neighbours or simply indulging in the stunning Warwickshire scenery.
6. The ‘Sunken Palace’ – Wraysbury
The secret to this property is that it is actually a bungalow. However, it has been surrounded by a Venetian-inspired palace ruin, a sunken garden and a moat. Yes, you heard that right. A real labour of love, the transformation of this property has been carried out over a period of 30 years. The property also features renaissance frescoes, a gold front door and his and hers thrones. Bizarre, but also very unique!
7. Toddalong Roundhouse AKA ‘The Hobbit House’ – St Mabyn, Cornwall
Named as one of the quirkiest places to stay in Cornwall, this 4-bed property looks hobbit-sized from the outside, but is impressively spacious on the inside. Featuring a mezzanine sleeping area, log burner and a children’s snug, this grass-roofed bungalow has everything you need for a magical family getaway. It is currently listed on Airbnb and is very popular, being that it is close to beautiful bays and cliff walks along the Cornish coastline.
8. Cemetery Gates Cottage – Edinburgh
This quaint little cottage, nestled in the shadow of Edinburgh Castle, is set inside the grounds of St Cuthbert’s Church. The old school house is often referred to as ‘the upside-down house’ because of the bedrooms being located on the ground floor, while the upstairs has a living room and bespoke kitchen. The reason for this soon becomes clear when you look up through the sash windows of the living room to see the fabulous views of the castle. What makes this property even more bizarre is that the garden is entirely lined with gravestones from the church grounds, dating back to the early 1800s. Creepy or inventive? That’s up to you to decide!
9. The Old Nick – Belper, Derbyshire
This grade II listed property was built in 1848 as Derbyshire’s first police headquarters, 19 years after Britain’s police force, the Met, was established. Although it is now a cosy family home, the property still retains some of its original features. A former cell has been transformed into an entertainment room, complete with bar and original bare stone walls. An original prison door leads into what is now the home’s study and the inmates’ former exercise yard has been moulded into a beautiful stone walled courtyard garden with planted borders.
10. The ‘Wee House’ – Clerkenwell, London
At just 8ft-wide, the aptly named ‘Wee House’ is tucked between two taller residential blocks on a triangular plot, tapering to a point at the back. The current owner has overhauled the layout to utilise every inch of available space. With two bedrooms, two wet rooms, a den and a plant room, as well as a fitted kitchen on the ground floor, the property has clever storage solutions to make things less cluttered. Some of the refurb required builders to abseil as this was the only way to gain access to the rear. Those suffering from claustrophobia, steer clear!