Former Fenland home of Thomas the Tank Engine’s author for sale

PUBLISHED: 19:37 07 April 2020 | UPDATED: 19:46 07 April 2020

Former Fenland home of Rev Wilmot Awdry, the author of Thomas the Tank Engine, is for sale. It is in Emneth, near Wisbech.

Former Fenland home of Rev Wilmot Awdry, the author of Thomas the Tank Engine, is for sale. It is in Emneth, near Wisbech.

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Rev Wilbert Awdry wrote 13 of his popular children’s books at The Old Vicarage in Emneth between 1953 and 1965.

Rev Wilbert Awdry,creator of Thomas the Tank Engine, with his wife, Margaret & family.(from left),Victoria,Christopher & Hilary; City:Emneth,Norfolk; Photo: Submitted via JH; Copy:Sue Skinner; For: EDP; EDP pics © 2003 Tel: (01603) 772434Rev Wilbert Awdry,creator of Thomas the Tank Engine, with his wife, Margaret & family.(from left),Victoria,Christopher & Hilary; City:Emneth,Norfolk; Photo: Submitted via JH; Copy:Sue Skinner; For: EDP; EDP pics © 2003 Tel: (01603) 772434

The 8-bedroom detached house was placed on the market last month, with an asking price of £895,000.

From his study, Rev Awdry penned around half of the Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends series - and children around the world still enjoy his much-loved stories today.

An online description about The Old Vicarage reads: “Parishioners coming to see their vicar entered the premises through the east side of the property, giving access to his study. It was in here that he wrote his famous books as well as attending to his day job.”

The property was built in 1858 using distinctive Victorian red bricks and is set in 1.5 acres of grounds.

Official unveiling of the Wilbert Awdry Plaque at the Old Vicarage in Emneth where the first Thomas the Tank books were penned.Official unveiling of the Wilbert Awdry Plaque at the Old Vicarage in Emneth where the first Thomas the Tank books were penned.

The architect, Ewan Christian, had designed many ecclesiastical buildings in his career, including Carlisle Cathedral.

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The Old Vicarage has retained many of its original period features. From fireplaces and ceiling roses to window shutters and panelling, the property still resembles elements that Rev Awdry would’ve been surrounded with when writing his books.

In June 2011, current owners Mark and Flo Thatcher opened their doors to the community and celebrated what would have been Rev Awdry’s 100th birthday.

During the event, they unveiled a blue plaque to officially mark the author’s residence at the property.

The online description from the property’s agent Belton Duffey explains The Old Vicarage is not a Listed building, and ‘could be suitable as a nursing home/guest house etc, subject to any necessary consents’.

Rev Awdry created the books which featured the fictional steam character with his son Christopher.

In 1979, British writer/producer Britt Allcroft came across the character and wanted to bring the stories to life as the TV series Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends. It was launched in October 1984 with former Beatles drummer Ringo Starr as the storyteller.

For more information about the property, call Belton Duffey in King’s Lynn on 01553 770055.


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