Could you be heir to a fortune? Almost 20 estates remain unclaimed across the district

Treasury records have revealed the estates worth potentially millions of pounds across Harrogate that are waiting to be claimed by long lost heirs.

Monday, 9th October 2017, 3:11 pm
Updated Tuesday, 12th December 2017, 1:02 pm
Currently 19 estatesmanaged by the governmentsince the death of their owners are listed as havinglinks to the district

Currently 19 estates managed by the government since the death of their owners are listed as having links to the district. The estates passed to the crown when the owners died with no known family or will, this is known as 'Bona Vacantia'.

The majority of these estates have links to Harrogate with 16 of the estates, the earliest of which dates to 1990. Two are also listed in Knaresborough, while the single Ripon estate is the oldest and dates back to 1988.

Estates could be made up of property, buildings and other items that can range in value but details are not published through these records.

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To be eligible for a claim you can be:

A husband, wife or civil partner.

Children, grandchildren, great grandchildren and further line.

Mother or father - brothers or sisters who share both the same mother and father, or their children, nieces and nephews.

Half brothers or sisters or their children - grandparents - uncles and aunts or their children - half uncles and aunts or their children.

Adopted children have the same rights to the estates of their adoptive family members, but none to the estates of their birth family.

The rules:

If there is no will made then the deceased spouse or civil partner, followed by any children, have first claim.

If no one from these branches is found then shares of the estate go to descendants of a grandparent. If you are related by marriage you would have no entitlement.

Making a claim:

To register a claim you must contact the Bona Vacantia branch of the Government Legal Department, this involves sending evidence which demonstrates you are related to the deceased owner of the estate.

It has to include details such as dates of birth, marriage and death. If this confirms you are indeed an entitled relative you will then be asked for further prove through documents such as birth certificates.

The list of those with links to the district with their birth date:


Peter Reginald Buckley 02/11/1954

Grete Willhelmina Christiansen 13/03/1926

Nancy Loraine Llyod Gaythorpe 26/10/1922

Brian Greetham 12/04/1943

Derek Hartley 12/01/1934

Derek Wilson Noble 26/08/1931

Patrick William O'Connor 18/06/1927

Leslie John Putt 07/01/1911

Eric Read 01/07/1914

Shaun Rhodes 15/04/1963

Wendy Smith 19/12/1932

Amanda Stevenson 29/01/1967

Mary Suffeld 20/12/1921

Phyllis Turner 24/09/1920

Martha Zavril and Eugene Zawadka 06/05/1909 and 27/07/1927


George Patrick Scott 15/11/1916

George Christopher Stoney 30/05/1937


Walter Edwin Ellis Jones 29/07/1916