Dorset

Round Island in Poole Harbour available for rent for first time

Round Island Image copyright Albury & Hall
Image caption Round Island is one of nine islands in Poole Harbour

A private island off the Dorset coast - reputedly once home to a notorious pirate - is being offered for rent for the first time.

Round Island, one of nine islands in Poole Harbour, has three cottages, a beach, pier and woodland and is being offered for a monthly rent of £15,000.

Estate agents described it as having "isolated charm".

Harry Paye, a 15th Century pirate, is said to have lived on the island from where he pillaged passing ships.

The 15-acre Round Island has been owned by a family since 1968 and is now being offered for let.

Harry Paye, still celebrated in Poole, intercepted hundreds of vessels heading to the post and led raids on the Spanish and French coast, provoking retaliation and the looting of the town in 1405.

He also lent his name to the Old Harry Rocks chalk formation off the Isle of Purbeck, behind which he would hide his ships before attacking passing merchant ships.

Image copyright Albury and Hall
Image caption The island has three cottages

The island is located on the western edge of the harbour, which is the second biggest natural harbour in the world, with views to the Purbeck Hills and Corfe Castle.

Potential tenants would be looked after by the island's resident caretakers who also ferry visitors on the 15-minute journey to and from the mainland.

Simon McIntyre of Albury and Hall estate agents in Swanage said he was anticipating interest from a "high-worth individual" or a corporate body.

"It's the uniqueness and the seclusion. It's not intended to be a hen party, stag party venue, that's for certain.

"I'm not sure many people can afford it, but as with everything in life, someone will."

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