£930,000 Lune Valley Georgian Hall to be raffled off in bid to raise money for Lancaster's St John's Hospice

Guy and Julie Vass are offering their home - Melling Hall - in a prize draw to support St John’s Hospice, the NHS and other charities through tough times.

Tuesday, 23rd June 2020, 10:56 am
Updated Tuesday, 23rd June 2020, 10:58 am

Julie, who works for a GP surgery, and retired husband Guy bought Melling Hall 18 years ago and have spent the last ten years lovingly restoring it.

A three-storey home with a sweeping driveway, a kitchen that has jumped straight out of a designer magazine, a two-storey high entrance hall with a spectacular staircase, three double bedrooms with panelled shutters and their own bathrooms, plus a self-contained two-bed loft apartment and mature gardens is now being offered in a prize draw for just £2.50 per entry.

In 2017, the property next door - Melling Manor - was raffled off by owner Dunstan Low.Owner of Melling Hall, Guy Vass, said: “My head and my heart says this is the right time; Julie and I have worked hard, brought up our two wonderful children here, and now it’s time to downsize and rather than just putting the house on the market we decided to take the chance to do something significant to help the local community by looking after our local hospice, St John’s, the NHS and other deserving charities.

Guy and Julie Vass at Melling Hall, which they are raffling off in a competition.

"End-of-life care is the one thing no-one wants to talk about, but it’s the one thing that everybody needs, so Julie and I want to play our part in supporting it.

“These are very difficult days and it’s difficult for smaller charities to raise the money they need and have their voices heard when all the runs, walks and events have been cancelled because of coronavirus.

"My wife, who is a keyworker for the NHS, used to work for a small charity, so she knows how demanding fundraising can be and therefore how important it is for people to support charities.

"So, when I mentioned the idea of using our home to support St John’s Hospice and charities such as NHS Charities Together, she was 100 per cent with me!

One of the bedrooms at Melling Hall.

"We both know how hard charities are working; so people may not think about St John’s as their first thought but they are taking a lot of pressure off our local NHS, in the hospice ward and out there in people’s homes.

“My neighbour ran a prize draw three years ago for St John’s Hospice and the thought of doing the same has always stayed with me.

"Julie and I have loved living here with the children and our dog Toby and now the time is right for someone else to enjoy it as a family home or weekend getaway.

"We have this opportunity to help St John’s Hospice and other charities such as NHS Charities Together when they are under such pressure so we’re acting on it!

Melling Hall.

“Julie and I know from previous experience that it costs money to raise money, so I am doing everything I can to keep the fundraising costs to a minimum so the proceeds can go to the charities that really need it.”

The house was recently independently valued at £930,000. St John’s Hospice and the additional charities will receive £100,000 if Julie and Guy achieve the minimum number of ticket sales, but the intention is to raise a maximum so that all the charities will receive £200,000 between them.

In the event the minimum target is not met they will still hold the draw and the charities will receive a cash prize of 20 percent of net sales and the winner will receive 80 percent.

You can enter for free and there’s even a special offer because for every 4 tickets you buy, you get one free!

Bathroom at Melling Hall.

There is also a second prize of £5,000, which will be shared between the two entrants who have created the highest number of ticket sales by informing other people of the existence of the draw, so there is more than one way to win.

Catherine Butterworth, Director of Income Generation, St John’s Hospice said, “What an incredible thing to do to support our charity! The timing could not be better – we have had to cancel so many of our major fundraising events because of coronavirus. The virus has also meant that we have had to close our lovely café and popular shops so every way we turn our fundraising streams are drying up.

“The house is just beautiful, it’s in a stunning setting of rolling countryside with wildlife views from every window and sits in the crossroads of access to National Parks, the Lakes and motorway access.

“It’s the dream in two ways – definitely the dream home to live in and absolutely the dream gesture for St John’s Hospice. Prize draw tickets are only £2.50 so please do buy some tickets so that we can carry on caring for our community and so you have the chance to win this home or at the very least the proceeds! You don’t even need to leave your house to take part – just buy the tickets from your sofa. Please, please take part and good luck.”

Tickets are on sale now and can be bought via www.winacountryhall.com, this page also shows the terms and conditions.

The view from the terrace.
Dining at Melling Hall.