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Curse of ‘saddest ever’ Grand Designs house continues as it goes on sale for knockdown price

The owner of a house on the “saddest ever” Grand Designs episode has said he wants to “put it behind him” after relisting the house for sale at a knockdown price.

Lighthouse-inspired Chesil Cliff House became infamous after the home’s construction left its owner Edward Short in £7m of debt.

The construction of the home took 12 years and went several million pounds over budget.

It featured on Channel 4’s Grand Designs and was described as the “saddest episode ever” by many who watched it after airing in October 2019.

The episode followed Mr Short and his family as misfortune beset the project leaving the house in Croyde, Devon, unfinished and with the family plunged into millions of pounds worth of debt.

The show also revealed that the process had taken a strain on Mr Short’s personal life, resulting in his separating from his wife Hazel.

It was first listed for sale in February last year but – despite rumours of celebrities including Harry Styles expressing interest – a buyer failed to emerge.

The house is at Saunton on the coast (Google Maps)
The house is at Saunton on the coast (Google Maps)

And now the five-bedroom home is back on the market again, listed by Savills on behalf of Joint Receivers at a knockdown price of £5.25m on Rightmove.

Mr Short has now revealed why the sale fell through – and how he plans to pay back his debts.

“We had a slight problem – the old driveway that was there before we bought the property,” he said.

“We built a brand-new driveway down to the new house, but the original driveway that goes down the other way has become a problem.

“That was partly behind the buyer’s concern because I think that was built in the 1960s.

“I’ve got to try and find a way to pay the lender back as much as possible.

“My belief is that we should be fixing the drive and taking that risk element away, but that’s a negotiation I’ve got to have – I think that’s the way for me to pay back the most money.

“The lenders have been very good with giving me time to sell it. It’s always going to be a bit of a financial fiasco to me, but that’s not the biggest problem in the world.

“The price now is very good and reflects the fact that you can just take that on and do it yourself.

“It was for sale all year and didn’t sell, but I’d be surprised if it didn’t sell at that price.”

Despite ongoing setbacks at Chesil Cliff House, Mr Short says he has begun a “new life”, and is eager to put the past behind him.

He is also set to tie the knot to his fiance Jalia Nambasa and says that finding love is more important than money.

“There have been highs and lows, but I’m used to highs and lows with this,” Mr Short said.

“I’m used to dealing with adversity, and money has always come and gone in my life.

“Things change that you don’t expect – I’ve fallen in love with a new partner now, and I’m engaged.

“I woke up one morning and realised I can do anything I want all of a sudden. The world had suddenly opened up again.

“That moment opened things up – and I ended up in Bath, and falling in love.

“That’s a much harder thing to find in your life than money.

“It makes a huge difference to have support. It’s like a new life.”

Now, he still hopes to sell the property – but says he’s already put the situation behind him.

“Mentally, this is all over and behind me anyway, but I still have to fight for the best outcome to pay the most money back.

“I’m going to get on with my new life – whatever the ending is, it’ll be what it’ll be.”

Reporting by SWNS