Melling Manor House competition’s hospice pledge

The family and the Manor House in Melling. Picture by pigs can fly photography.
The family and the Manor House in Melling. Picture by pigs can fly photography.

A man behind a unique competition that could see the winner become the owner of a luxury Lune Valley house is pledging £25,000 of ticket sales to St John’s Hospice.

Dunstan Low from Melling is raffling off his house and has said £25,000 of the proceeds will go to the hospice in Lancaster.

The 37-year-old and his wife Natasha live in the village with their two children Dylan, 16, and Ozzy, five.

See our original story on the couple and their manor home here

“We decided we wanted to add a pledge to a charity if we reached our target of £1 million worth of tickets.

“We immediately thought of St John’s Hospice as an excellent beneficiary and announced we would donate £25,000 to the hospice should we sell all our tickets.

“My wife has lost a close family friend last year and was blown away by the level of care and compassion.”

In 2011 the family decided to purchase Melling Manor – the East Wing of the former Melling Hall, situated in the Lune Valley. Dunstan’s internet marketing company was growing and they fell in love with the six bedroom historic property built in 1792. Sadly during the recession, Dunstan’s business started to flail and they fell behind with their mortgage payments.

Dunstan describes this period as a time of great stress and anxiety; with a young family to support.

He had to find new ways to earn a living – over the next five years he tried all sorts of things from landscape gardening to designing wind turbines.

Unfortunately none of these projects kept the debtors at bay and they were faced with the difficult decision of having to walk away from Melling Manor and hand it back to the bank.

Dunstan did not want to give up and had the seed of an idea to try and raffle his house off. After two days of immersive internet research; on February 1 he had launched winacountryhouse.com

Initial ticket sales were slow but as news travelled that you could have the chance of winning a stunning luxury country house for a meagre £2 stake, press got on board.

Dunstan said: “In debt for almost five years, we felt so alone and struggled to see a way out of our situation.

“When the public started to hear about our story we were overwhelmed by the level of empathy and encouragement. We felt touched that people identified with our situation.

To find out more about how to win this amazing property visit www.winacountryhouse.com.