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Magical Mull Retreat Once Owned By Lord Rab Butler

Frachadil House, the Isle of Mull holiday home of former government minister Lord Rab Butler, is now for sale through Galbraith.

Dating from the 1600s, Frachadil House is an impressive B-listed country house offering privacy, land, beautiful views and a wonderful Hebridean lifestyle.

Nicky Archibald of Galbraith, who is handling the sale, said: 

This is a superb island home, benefiting from a very picturesque and tranquil setting, surrounded by delightful grounds with a walled garden and woodland. The house itself combines traditional features with superb contemporary interior design, which will appeal to a wide range of purchasers.

Part of the house has been let successfully as self-catering accommodation and another part of the house welcomed guests on a bed and breakfast basis. The purchasers may wish to continue to do this, given the appeal of Mull as a holiday destination. In addition, there is ample scope for development of the property, subject to planning consent.

Rab Butler (Baron Butler of Saffron Walden) served as Chancellor of the Exchequer from 1951 to 1955, Home Secretary (1957–62), Deputy Prime Minister (1962–63) and Foreign Secretary (1963–64). 

Rab and his second wife Mollie Butler bought Frachadil in 1961. They holidayed in the house for twenty years, often visiting three times a year until Lord Butler was too ill to travel.  

The book ‘August & Rab, A Memoir’ written by Mollie Butler in 1987, includes the following reference: ‘Rab and I spent twenty summers there and very often went up in winter and at Easter, in fact so much did he love it that my occasional suggestion of a holiday in France or Italy generally went unheeded. It is difficult to convey in words the magic of that place; its hold upon our hearts was absolute.’ 

The property is situated in an elevated position close to Calgary Bay. Frachadil House is one of only a few on Mull enjoying views of the Small Isles of Eigg, Muck, Rhum and Canna. The Isle of Skye and the lighthouse at Ardnamurchan Point, the most westerly mainland point in Great Britain, are also visible from the house. Mull remains one of the most popular of the Inner Hebrides isles while Calgary Bay, with its sandy beach, is one of the most admired parts of the island.

Frachadil House offers spacious and attractive accommodation including, on the ground floor: a contemporary, open plan dining kitchen with double oven Aga, a sun room with adjoining drawing room ideal for guests, a family sitting room and snug. 

On the first floor and accessed via a separate staircase are two bedrooms with a shower room; this area was let out as bed and breakfast accommodation by the previous owners. Also on the first floor are a further four bedrooms and bathroom.

The second floor has a stylish, self-contained, two-bedroom apartment with open plan living/kitchen area and bath/shower room. The apartment has been successfully let in the past as self-catering accommodation. There are two further bedrooms with coombed ceilings and a laundry room.

The grounds, which extend to about ten acres, include large expanses of lawn, a wild flower meadow and woodland. To the side of the property there is a large burn which marks the boundary. Within this area is a substantial walled garden with mature plants and trees. Enclosed by the original dry stone walls, this part of the garden provides a wonderful sun trap, protected from the elements.

Throughout the grounds are a variety of seating areas including a patio accessed from the kitchen. Sea views can also be enjoyed from the grounds above the house.

Frachadil House is ideally situated for local attractions and services including the popular Art in Nature trail and café at Calgary Bay and village shop, post office and primary school at Dervaig. Tobermory, a short drive away, offers a range of artisan shops, cafés and restaurants and has an acclaimed secondary school, award winning theatre and distillery.

Mull is connected to the mainland by ferry services including from Craignure to Oban and from Tobermory to Kilchoan on the Ardnamurchan Peninsula.

Offers over £625,000 are sought for Frachadil House. For further details please contact Galbraith.