EVER fancied living in an historic house for a peppercorn rent?
A vacancy has arisen at Cottage Homes almshouses in New Mill.
The five terraced homes were built by philanthropist William Hirst in 1912 in the ancient British almshouses tradition.
Alms are, in the Christian tradition, money or services donated to the poor and almshouses were established in 10th century Britain to provide a home for poor, old and distressed people.
Now you don’t have to be poor or distressed to live in one.
But if you’re over 60, independent and of modest means you can qualify.
The UK has about 2,600 almshouses which provide 30,000 homes for 36,000 people.
All of these homes are owned and run by the Almshouse Association charity.
And because of their heritage, good upkeep and subsidised rents almshouses have become quite desirable.
New Mill Almshouse Trust (NMAT) runs Cottage Homes on Sheffield Road in New Mill.
A resident has recently left and NMAT is now appealing for new tenants.
Vicar of New Mill Sean Robertshaw has been NMAT chairman for 18 months.
He said the one-bedroom empty house would make an ideal home for an older person or couple.
“There’s a nice garden area at the front and it’s very attractive,’’ he said. “It’s within walking distance of New Mill and has beautiful bedroom views.
“They are really beautiful. They’re not massive but for someone living on their own or a couple they’re fine.
“There’s not much knowledge about these homes. People barely even know we exist.
“If you think you qualify and would like to live in one of these houses you can, so get in touch.”
To apply call Rev Robertshaw on 07980 289727.
Applicants must currently reside in the Holme Valley.
The first recorded almshouse was founded in York by King Athelstan.
The oldest still in existence is the Hospital of St Cross, Winchester, which dates back to around 1132.