Living in a stately home is a dream shared by many, in particular avid fans of period dramas which feature beautiful castles, manors and mansions in all their splendour. Those who live in large country houses benefit from spacious rooms, huge grounds and striking period features, often designed by an eminent architect of the past. However, keeping such a large house does not always complement a modern lifestyle, where few people have the resources to keep a large team of staff to maintain their home. To enjoy the benefits of living in a country house without taking on the whole estate, it is becoming increasingly popular to purchase an apartment created from one wing of a large stately home. Below is a selection of such properties, which allow owners to fulfil the fantasy of owning a large house in the country, while enjoying the convenience offered by a smaller property. Swaylands, situated just outside the village of Penhurst, Kent, was once in private ownership but now is divided into 28 apartments. The large property is surrounded by the most spectacular countryside within the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The house has a colourful history with both royal and literary connections, and dates back to the mid-19th century, with castellated turrets, mullioned windows and imposing archways. The apartments now offer luxurious and spacious accommodation, all updated for 21st century living whilst retaining many period features. There are also 40 acres of communal grounds with a tennis court and gym for residents to enjoy. Prices start at 750,000 for a three bed apartment. The properties here are on the market with our Tunbridge Wells office (tel.: 01892 521700). For more information please click here. Aldersyde House, situated two miles south of the city of York, is a Grade-II listed Victorian mansion which has now been split into 14 apartments. The Oak Room is a two-bedroom apartment, which includes some of the original houses most attractive period features, including a striking marble fireplace, which incorporates sculpture from a renowned Yorkshire craftsman, GW Milburn. The owners are able to enjoy a communal orangery and the gardens which surround the property. The property is on the market for 475,000 with our York office (tel.: 01904 625033). For more information click here. New Wardour Castle, situated one and a half miles from the village of Tisbury, Wiltshire, was once a private house built for the Arundell family, but is now separated into 10 apartments. The Grade-I Listed Georgian house is surrounded by extensive grounds, which include a pristine lawn and striking hardwood trees. Just one mile away sits Old Wardour Castle, which was partly destroyed by Oliver Cromwells civil war army. The top floor flat includes five bedrooms, a fitted kitchen with granite worktops, marble clad bathrooms and a magnificent double aspect drawing room with breath-taking views. The property is on the market for 895,000 with our Shaftesbury office (tel.: 01747 850858). For more information please click here. Gayhurst House, an Elizabethan mansion situated on the outskirts of the village of Gayhurst, Buckinghamshire, is steeped in history. In 1581 Queen Elizabeth I gave the estate to Sir Francis Drake as a reward for his military services. The house has since been owned by Sir Everard & Lady Digby, notable for their involvement with the Gun Powder Plot and Guy Fawkes. Along with Bletchley Park, the house was conscripted to the World War II efforts, acting as a base for intelligence officers attempting to crack the Enigma Code. Apartment 19 is a two-storey property, comprising of four bedroom suites, three reception rooms and a bespoke Robinson Cornish kitchen. It is full of attractive features, including fine high ceilings, impressive windows and historic panelling. The property is on the market for 760,000 with our Woburn office. (tel.: 01525 290641). For more information please click here.