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Daphne du Maurier's house goes up for sale

4th August 2011

The house that inspired the setting for one of Daphne du Maurier's most personal novels has been put up for sale, offering the buyer a rich slice of literary history.

Readymoney cottage, located near Fowey in Cornwall, is being sold by Savills, which is asking for offers in excess of GBP 2 million.

Du Maurier lived there between 1942 and 1943, with the cottage acting as a refuge after the author, who was married to Lieutenant General Sir Frederick Browning, was caught in an embrace with a married man.

It was at Readymoney that she wrote the family saga Hungry Hill, described by the author as a reaction to her previous novel, Frenchman's Creek, which she had dismissed as 'frivolous'.

However, despite the tranquil setting of the cottage, Du Maurier became discontent with life there when Browning returned home from north Africa.

She then moved to nearby Menabilly, a grand house that was reputedly the inspiration for Manderley, the estate featured in her classic novel Rebecca.

Justine Hambly-Wooldridge, from the Daphne du Maurier literary centre in Fowey, told the Guardian the area will always be closely associated with the author.

She said of Readymoney: 'A lot of people still visit. Many people try and go to Menabilly, but it's very inaccessible and closed to the public. There's still a great deal of interest in her and her homes and the area.'

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