Yester's new owners, Gareth and Nicola Wood

Yester’s new owners, Gareth and Nicola Wood

Yester House, the magnificent East Lothian seat of the Hay Marquises of Tweeddale, has been sold.

Following the death of the 11th Marquis in 1967, the house was acquired by Gian Carlo Menotti, the Italian American composer.  His heir, Francis Menotti, put the estate on the market in 2008 for £15 million, when it was billed as the most expensive house in Scotland.

Despite the best efforts of agents Knight Frank, the house attracted little interest, even after the price was nearly halved to £8 million. Now, five years on, Yester has been sold to Gareth and Nicola Wood for an undisclosed sum.

Mr Wood is the son of Aberdeen oil tycoon Sir Ian Wood, and his wife, also from Aberdeen, is former Miss Scotland Nicola Jolly.  It is understood that the Woods are working with East Lothian Council and Historic Scotland on plans to develop the estate.

Yester, which has been described as ‘the best house in Scotland,’ is largely the work of Scottish architect William Adam, although it was begun as early as 1697 for John Hay, second Marquis of Tweeddale.