Jamaica Inn, the internationally renowned smugglers' inn immortalised in Daphne du Maurier’s eponymous best-selling novel, has been sold for over £2million.

The iconic inn was sold just six weeks after specialist property adviser Christie + Co put it on the market

The Inn, also once owned by the thriller-writer Alistair MacLean, has been acquired by first-time buyer Allen Jackson for a price in excess of the £2 million sought by Christie + Co.

New owner, Allen Jackson, says: “Within an hour of viewing the Jamaica Inn, I had made an offer. I saw it as a fantastic opportunity to acquire Cornwall’s most iconic, historic and famous Inn. This amazing place has so much potential. And, of course with the BBC adaptation of Daphne du Maurier’s novel airing around Easter, I believe that it’s a very timely acquisition.”

Previous owners, John and Wendy Watts, who were at the helm for the last 40 years, said: “We feel privileged to have had the opportunity of owning the inn, and have enjoyed many happy and successful years in the business. It is a very special property, steeped in history and legend, but it is now time to yield it to younger hands, who will inject new life and progress it further, for generations to come. We wish Mr Allen Jackson and team great success in the future.”

Matthew Smith, director of Christie + Co in Exeter, said there was an "extraordinary response, with hundreds of prospective buyers from across the globe — including North America, Canada and Australia.

He said: “Within days of launching it was quite clear the business would sell for in excess of the guide price due to the demand we received. Allen Jackson was very decisive in his decision making and agreed terms just seven days after we launched, exchanging contracts some nine days after that.

"The sale of Jamaica Inn is a great result for both buyer and seller — John and Wendy Watts can now enjoy their retirement, whilst it’s clear Mr Jackson has the vision and understanding to move the business onto the next level which is exciting for anyone connected with Jamaica Inn.”