£8m price tag on Led Zeppelin star's former home in Plumpton

PLUMPTON Place, a moated Elizabethan manor house that has been home to peers and rock stars, is up for sale - for an eye-watering £8m.

The price is a far cry from the 3,300 paid for it in 1927 when it was bought by Edward Hudson, the founder of Country Life.

He had spotted the property, which was in a major state of disrepair, in his own magazine.

He engaged his favourite architect Edwin Lutyens and garden designer Gertrude Jekyll to embark on a major restoration programme on the 16th century main house, mill house and 60 acres of land and lakes.

It was still unfinished when Hudson died in 1937.

A year later Plumpton Place was sold for 9,000 to racing enthusiast Lord Manton, who built the charming, 19-box stable yard beside an enormous, Grade II-listed Elizabethan barn.

In 1972, rock star Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin bought the property for 200,000 and, ten years later, sold it to developer Philip Gorringe for 650,000.

Shortly afterwards, Gorringe sold it on to legendary American venture capitalist Tom Perkins, the current owner, for a reputed 800,000.

Now the manor house, described as "an enchanted place" by Nikolaus Pevsner in his Buildings of England, is being advertised in the latest issue of Country Life.

It is on the market through Knight Frank (020-7629 8171) and Savills (020-7016 3701).

Plumpton Place, standing at the foot of the South Downs, was built for the Mascall family in 1568 on the site of an earlier manor house mentioned in Domesday.

Water was as important an element of the estate then as it is now - and the source of its wealth, judging from the staggering 4,000 paid for the property in 1620 by Sir Thomas Springett of Arundel Castle.

The original house was E-shaped and probably thatched.

The north and south fronts are the earliest parts and possibly date from the 1400s.

The flint west front is 16th century, but the east front is almost entirely Lutyens, dominated by his dramatic, double-height music room, which rises from the water's edge on a plinth of stone, beneath a huge catslide roof and tall chimney stacks.

In addition to the music room/great hall, ground-floor rooms include a panelled library, a morning room overlooking the moat, an intimate family dining room and a kitchen.

A newly crafted staircase leads to master and guest suites, and two further bedrooms on the first floor, with two further bedroom suites on the second floor.