The joint letting agents were Savills and Quinton Edwards. Quinton Edwards director Simon Quinton-Smith said: "The garden centre wasn't doing that well and the Ravens have taken it over and are doing a good job."
The Ravens run Redcliffe in Lymington, Hampshire, and a nursery in the New Forest. The enterprise has plenty of growth potential, according to Kay Griffiths of Savills.
She said: "The estate is open to the public and attracts a large number of visitors throughout the year, so footfall to the garden centre is pretty well guaranteed. What it needed, following the retirement of the previous operator, was someone with new ideas, a good business grounding and plenty of enthusiasm to realise the full potential of the enterprise. The Raven brothers already have experience in the garden centre and nursery industry and are well placed to move the business forward."
Stansted House Garden Centre comprises an 18-bay glasshouse, an open sales area for items such as landscaping materials, stoneware and sheds, and a glass-canopied ‘planteria' totalling 3,143sq m. Ten concessions operate within the garden centre.
The entire country estate is owned by the Stansted Park Foundation. In addition to the garden centre, it houses the successful Pavilion Tea Room, Salon du Chocolat, Stansted Park Light Railway, gardens, arboretum and the Chapel of St Paul. A yew maze is due to open in 2010.
TV gardener Alan Titchmarsh launched the restored 19th-century Dutch Garden in 2005 and returned to film in the grounds earlier this year. Stansted House itself also has a programme of weddings, corporate days and public events throughout the year.
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