Homes gossip

Talk show host Graham Norton has bought a weekend retreat in St Leonards-on-Sea; and comedian Harry Enfield is moving into a five-storey family home off Ladbroke Grove
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Graham Norton
© Channel Four
Graham Norton

Hello sailors, says Norton

Talk show host Graham Norton has bought a seafront pad in St Leonards-on-Sea, near Hastings, as a weekend retreat from his Wapping base.

The white stucco Victorian flat is near Warrior Square, part of an impressive Regency enclave where three-bedroom mansion-block flats sell for £180,000 to £200,000.

The Dublin-born presenter is currently portraying drag star ZaZa in the hit West End musical La Cage Aux Folles. He already owns a holiday home in County Cork, where he attended boarding school and briefly studied English and French at University College.

In blowy St Leonards residents pay almost as much attention to his two frolicsome mutts, Bailey and Madge, whom he takes for bracing sea walks along the promenade.

Harry Enfield
© Tony Harris
Harry Enfield
Loadsamoney comedian Harry Enfield has proved to be not only a shrewd judge of TV scripts but also of property. He sold his Notting Hill mansion 18 months ago for £12 million, making a £9.5 million profit on what he paid for it in 1999.

Now that prices have plummeted, he has bought a five-storey white-stucco house off Ladbroke Grove, where houses cost £5.5 million.

The Hastings-born creator of Tory Boy, Tim Nice-But-Dim and Kevin the Teenager has moved there with his wife, Lucy, and their children, Archie, Poppy and Neil. The main family home remains in a Domesday Book village in Buckinghamshire.

Biff Byford
© Frisco Gentsch
Biff Byford
Life in a Normandy château has palled for shaggy-haired heavy-metal legend Biff Byford. For a quick sale he has snipped £68,000 from the £604,000 he was asking last year.

The Barnsley-born lead singer of Saxon bought the late-19th century, seven-bedroom property near Caen for £400,000 in 2005. He settled there with his wife, Sue, and their children, Stephanie, Sebastian and twins Thomas and Alexander.

“We’ve lived in France for the past seven years and it’s been great for the kids,” Byford says. “But they’ll want to go back to England to further their education and it would be good if we had a place there.”

In the Eighties, Saxon rivalled Iron Maiden and Motorhead, with hits such as Wheels of Steel and Never Surrender and ear-splitting worldwide tours.

Joan Crawford
© AP
Joan Crawford
The former Los Angeles home of Hollywood temptress Joan Crawford is for sale at £5.1 million through Sotheby’s International.

The seven-bedroom Mediterranean villa-style property has been completely re-modelled by its present owners, US talk show host Leeza Gibbons and her estranged husband, actor/architect Stephen Meadows.

The Oscar-winning star of Grand Hotel and Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? lived there for 26 years. Known as the Jazz Age Jezebel, she married four times but died aged 72 in 1977 with only her Shih Tzu, Princess Lotus Blossom, for company.

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