The oldest Italian-style water tower in Norfolk has come back up for sale just a year after it was sold - and this time it's listed for £25k more.

The old red brick water tower on Northgate in Dereham was constructed in the 1880s and used to supply water to the town.

It went out of use around 50 years ago and in 2020, planning permission was granted to transform it into a unique new home. Work started on it but it was put up for sale, partly completed.

The current owner bought it around a year ago and has since made further improvements and adjustments but is now selling it again, also incomplete.

It's up for sale for £25,000 more than it was last year, listed at offers over £450,000.

Ben Greentree, from property agent Haart, calls it a “Grand Designs”-style project and says it offers huge potential for the right buyer, allowing them to take the reins on what he calls a truly unique opportunity.

“For someone who’s looking for that grand design project – it sounds cliche, but it’s true – if you can visualise something, if you can be creative, if you can think of what something can be... this could be absolutely amazing.”

The proposed accommodation is set over five floors and is arranged in an ‘upside down’ style, which Ben says makes it “really interesting.”

It includes planning permission for both stairs and a lift, to make it accessible, and a large bedroom on the ground floor.

Bedrooms are expected to occupy the second and third floor and the fourth and fifth will be transformed into living spaces.

Despite being for sale, partly converted, a lot has been done since work first began.

According to Haart, a 30,000 gallon water tank has been removed from the top of the building, dilapidated floors have been replaced and the roof has been completely renewed, then replaced with quarry slate tiles and reinsulated.

New windows, including a sky lantern, have also been installed, and walls have been knocked out to create more modern and open-plan living spaces.

Despite these changes, Ben says the owner has retained much of its original charm. “I’ve gone to so many houses in my time,” explains Ben. “People, they get a lovely house but they rip out all the character, so it loses its personality – he hasn’t done that. He’s kept the personality. He’s kept the character.”

Ben says this is particularly important because the water tower is so iconic, well-loved by those in the area. “It’s not just another development project,” he says. “It’s something that’s significant to the people who live here.”

Due to its height, The Old Water Tower also offers a great vantage point, Ben says, which further adds to its appeal. “I’ve been to the very top where he’s actually put in windows so you can see out, and the view of the town is absolutely amazing. That is one of the big selling points of this property, it really is.”

The property would be well-suited to a buyer who is passionate about architecture and engineering or even to an investor who sees the potential to wants to develop it further.

It could even be separated and divided up, or maybe added to someone’s existing property portfolio.

“It’s got endless potential,” Ben admits “If you really want to think outside the box, you could do it here. There is nothing else like it on the market in the area at the moment.”

For more information, contact Ben Greentree at Haart by calling 01362 696977.

The Old Water Tower, Dereham
Offers in excess of £450,000
Haart, 01362 696977

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