Homes where murders took place and who bought them afterwards

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House hunters have been able to snap up a bargain and it is all to do with the grim pasts of some UK properties.

While knowing the property you're buying was once the scene of an horrific murder may put many people off, there are those who are able to forget the grim history.

In fact those who have managed to put the past behind them have snapped up some real deals.

Notorious killer Dennis Nilsen's attic flat in Muswell Hill, north London, was bought by a couple four years ago for the relatively cheap price of £493,000.

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It had an awful past, but the new owners were untroubled by the fact Nilsen had cut up three young men in the flat three decades earlier and clogged up the drains with body parts.

23 Cranley Gardens London N10 rear MSI

Once he'd finished his killings, the former police officer would sit on his sofa with the corpse next to him watching television as if nothing was amiss.

The couple said: "We looked it up and read all about the history. But it was all 35, 40 years ago. For us it was never an issue."

He died in HMP Full Sutton in May 2019 aged 72 from internal bleeding after suffering a ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysm.

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During his killing spree, he befriended his victims in bars and pubs before luring them back to the flat.

Below we've taken a look at other homes linked to horrific murders and who bought them afterwards.

Crossbow cannibal serial killer Stephen Griffiths

Student Azarias Fontaine had no issue with moving into the modest flat on the outskirts of Bradford, West Yorkshire, where the deranged Crossbow Cannibal murdered and dismembered three women.

Azarias said in 2017: "I can see it would freak out a lot of people but not me. Just because some crazy murders took place here, does not make it a bad place."

He moved into the redecorated flat because the rent was just £360 a month.

The landlord told him about the crimes and said the kitchen, bathroom and carpets had been replaced.

Griffiths, who once told a court his name was the 'Crossbow Cannibal' was jailed for life in December 2010 after admitting the murder of Suzanne Blamires, 36, Shelley Armitage, 31, and Susan Rushworth, 43.

Serial killer and rapist Peter Tobin

Police at the garden of the house in Margate, Kent, where Peter Tobin lived

The seaside home in Margate, Kent, where Scottish born serial killer and sex offender Peter Tobin buried Vicky Hamilton, 15, and Dinah McNicol, 18, in the garden is now home to a young family.

When mum Abigail Dengate moved there in 2010 she said: "People have had a lot to say about this house and its history but to us it is just a home.

"It wasn’t a case of thinking about who once lived here and what he did.”

Tobin, now aged 73, lived there in the early 1990s and, when spotted digging, told a neighbour he was making a sandpit.

He is now serving life for the murders.

Tobin also raped and murdered Angelika Kluk, a 23-year-old student from Poland who had been staying at the presbytery of St Patrick's Church in Anderston, Glasgow, in 2006.

He concealed her body in an underground chamber beneath the church and was arrested in London shortly afterwards.

Camden Ripper Anthony Hardy

4 Hartland House, Camden, North London is where serial killer Anthony Hardy, also known as The Camden Ripper, lived

Several tenants are living at the flat at 4, Hartland House where the Camden Ripper Anthony Hardy killed at least three people ­including Elizabeth Valad, 29, Sally White, 31, and Brigette Maclennan, 34.

In 2000, he moved to a one-bedroom social housing flat on Royal College Street in Camden, close to King's Cross, where sex workers walked the streets.

He was given three life sentences for the murders which took place to "satisfy his depraved and perverted needs". Hardy was obsessed with Jack the Ripper, which is how he acquired his moniker.

He disposed of body parts at his home in a communal bin area but was discovered when a homeless person looking for food found a pair of legs.

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When the house came up for rent in April 2004, more than 30 prospective tenants expressed an interest in the property following a £20,000 refurbishment.

Camden Council said at the time: "Because the flat is part of a block, it is not viable to demolish it.

"Because of the circumstances, the council has taken the decision to completely gut the flat – including the removal of all fixtures and fittings, and decorations and woodwork – and replace as new."

The flat is in a four-storey block on a quiet, sprawling estate overlooking the Royal Veterinary College.

Hardy, 64, appealed his conviction in 2010 but was told by a judge: "This is one of those exceptionally rare cases in which life should mean life."

Lord Lucan's townhouse

The property at 46 Lower Belgrave Street, London, Belgravia, where Lord Lucan lived with his family

Lord Lucan vanished without trace after his children's nanny was found dead in the basement of his sprawling Belgravia townhouse.

He also attacked his wife, Lady Lucan, who later identified him as the perpetrator and fled the scene in a borrowed Ford Corsair.

While mystery and speculation surround his disappearance, the vast home where Sandra Rivett, 29, met her brutal end in November 1974, still stands, in Lower Belgrave Street, Belgravia.

It is thought Sandra was bludgeoned to death by Lord Lucan who, in the dimly lit basement, mistook the children's nanny for his wife, as he hit her with lead piping.

Lady Lucan was also attacked, but survived, and managed to run to the nearby Plumbers Arms where she screamed: "Help me, help me. I have just escaped from a murderer. He's in my house.

"He's murdered the nanny."

Lady Lucan died at her home in Eaton Row, Belgravia, in 2017 and donated her estate to the charity Shelter, which supports those dealing with homelessness or housing issues.

She severed all ties with her family in the 1980s and continued to refuse contact with them until her death.

A death certificate for Lord Lucan was finally issued four years ago, allowing his son George to legally inherit his family title.

The current residents of the property where Sandra Rivett died have never given interviews. His three surviving children are reluctant to talk, too.

Fred and Rose West's house

No 25 Cromwell Street Gloucester home of killers Rose and Fred West.

Fred and Rose West killed at least 12 women and children at their home in Gloucester over a 20-year period.

The couple also sexually abused and tortured many of their victims. They then dismembered the bodies and buried them under the patio of their home at 25 Cromwell Street, Gloucester.

It was the disappearance of their daughter Heather that finally proved to be the undoing of the couple. Police officers got a search warrant and discovered the property's grisly secrets.

In 1994, eight years after Heather as last seen, police began digging at the property. Fred was found dead in his cell in 1995 just weeks before the murder trial was due to begin.

Their former family home was razed to the ground in 1996 and rubble carted away to deter anyone from keeping a sick memento.

Sadie Hartley murder

The scene at 8 Sunnybank, in Helmshore, Lancashire, home of Sadie Hartley where she was killed by Sarah Williams and Katrina Walsh.

The house in a cul-de-sac in the village of Helmshore, Rossendale where mother-of-two Sadie Hartley was murdered, was finally sold after £50,000 was knocked off the asking price.

The five-bedroom property went on the market in February 2016.

Sadie Hartley, 60, died on January 14 2016 when she was brutally attacked by Sarah Williams, then 35, suffering multiple knife wounds after she was paralysed with a high voltage stun gun when she answered the door.

Williams, who had a relationship with Sadie's long-term partner and wanted him back, was convicted of murder alongside her accomplice, then 56, and jailed for life in August 2016 at Preston Crown Court.

The RightMove listing described the house where the brutal killing took place as 'a substantial five bedroom detached family home set in a highly regarded woodland setting'.

"Originally built by 'Hurstwood' these sought-after family homes are ideal for the modern professional family being close to local amenities and countryside and a short drive to the motorway network."

Killer Dale Cregan's house

The property at 22 Somerset Road, Droylesden which belonged to Dale Cregan

The former house of notorious police killer Dale Cregan sold for almost double its guide price.

Proceeds from the sale were directed towards funding police work and other good causes.

The two-bed semi in Somerset Road, Droylsden, had a guide price of £40,000 but sold at auction for £71,000.

Cregan will never be released from prison after ambushing and murdering PCs Fiona Bone, 32, and Nicola Hughes, 23, in 2012 as they investigated a burglary in Mottram while Cregan was on the run after killing gangland rivals David and Mark Short.

The potential purchasers were 'advised that the registered proprietor of the property is a convicted criminal and the buyer purchases the property in the full knowledge of this fact and shall raise no further questions in this regard'.

Darren McKie's house

Greater Manchester Police inspector and martial arts expert Darren McKie, then 43, killed his wife Leanne, 39, at their home in Wilmslow, before using her red Mini Countryman car to move her body to Poynton Lake, where he dragged her into the water and left her face down.

She had worked as a detective in the Serious Sexual Offences Unit where she supported victims when they were at their most vulnerable.

But the trial heard the couple were £103,000 in debt with loan firms and builders who were renovating their new home with fittings including granite work tops and under-floor heating, which they had moved into just weeks before her death.

He was sacked by GMP after his conviction and was jailed for life with a minimum of 19 years.

The couple had paid £435,000 for the house and spent £70,000 on improvements and the property was listed, in September 2018, for £480,000.

The listing said: "In September 2017 there was a crime committed at the premises. For further information please contact the local property expert."

Do you have the right to know if a murder took place in a property?

Mark Hayward, chief executive of the estate agents' body the NAEA Propertymark, said: "Under Consumer Protection Regulations, an agent is duty-bound to disclose any information that might affect a consumer's decision."

Professor David Wilson, a crime expert who has met some of the UK's most violent killers and is Professor of Criminology at Birmingham City University, said: "In the case of Fred and Rose West, the council compulsorily purchased the house.

"They ensured it was destroyed and even the bricks were obliterated to ensure it didn't become a dark shrine to their crimes.

"There's a lot of diversity in this area as some people quite happily live in houses with these types of pasts.

"Some don't know what has happened there and others embrace it.

"Certainly if a violent crime has occurred at the property and the nature of that crime is in the public domain, it may well affect the amount offered or deter buyers altogether and therefore should be disclosed."

He urged families who were considering buying properties associated with murders to 'consider carefully' the psychological impact it might have.

Five years ago, Professor Wilson visited the home of notorious serial killer Mary Ann Cotton in the North East and the residents were 'very happy' to talk to him about the case and the impact.

He said: "They lived there and they had no problem with the house's past."

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