© PA/Joel Ryan
Ronnie rocks into Chelsea
Rolling Stone Ronnie Wood has finally found the ideal spot to set up home with his teenage girlfriend, Russian cocktail waitress Ekaterina Ivanova.
Appropriately, the new house is in groovy Chelsea, just a guitar-twang away from Sir Mick Jagger’s new Cheyne Walk mansion. Similar five-bedroom Chelsea properties with rare off-street parking sell for between £4.5 million and £5 million.
The Hillingdon-born wrinkly rocker previously lived with his long-suffering wife, organic beauty specialist Jo Wood, in a former Victorian hunting lodge overlooking Richmond Park, which included a bar, full-size snooker table, recording studio and conservatory, where he painted his distinctive portraits.
The luvved-up couple also share Sandymount House, the £3 million listed County Kildare mansion that madcap Wood bought 18 years ago, which has a statue of Elvis Presley in the courtyard.
New mantra of the chattering classes in the recession: “If you can’t sell it, rent it”. But Britain’s Got Talent judge Amanda Holden has invented an alternative. She and her new husband, music producer Chris Hughes, have turned their £2.5 million three-bedroom Richmond riverside penthouse into their office.
© Mark Large
Meanwhile they have moved into a modern five-bedroom house nearby, with a large garden more suited to raising their baby daughter Lexi. “I’d been settled in Primrose Hill for 10 years before we moved in together in 2002,” recalls the Southsea-born actress. “But I absolutely could never go back now. The wide-open spaces, shops and restaurants are fantastic here. My ultimate aim is to live in one of those Georgian houses overlooking Richmond Green.”
The pair spend weekends at their “very cute” Norfolk cottage near Burnham Market, where “everything is old-fashioned and we just about have electricity.”
Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson’s mum, Shirley, has sold her Northamptonshire home, Carbery House, for £645,000. She has already bought its replacement, a converted Wesleyan chapel, also near Corby.
© PA/Chris Young
“I’m a serial mover,” says the dynamic Doncaster-raised septuagenarian. “As soon as I get a place how I like it, it’s time to be off.”
In 1972 her tea-cosy company Gabrielle Designs struck lucky when it manufactured the first Paddington Bears, kitting them out in their distinctive Wellington boots and floppy bush hats. The profits enabled her and her husband Eddie, a travelLing salesman, to send Jeremy and his sister Joanna to private schools.
Supermarket heiress Jessica Sainsbury is £10.25 million richer, having just sold her five-bedroom Chelsea home through Strutt & Parker. The secluded new-build Arts and Crafts-style house in scenic Glebe Place became too small for her growing family.
“The house has been bought by an American banker and, despite the recession, there were two other serious bidders wanting to pay more than the £9.85 million asking price,” reports a friend.
Jessica, daughter of former Tory MP for Hove Sir Timothy Sainsbury, has three children — Francis, Flora and Katarina — from her marriage to Croatian historian Peter Frankopan. In 2002 they transformed a Grade II listed 19th century retirement home, set in 55 acres near Cheltenham, into the hip Cowley Manor Hotel and spa. Jessica’s older sister Camilla is married to Northern Ireland secretary Shaun Woodward. Their great-great grandfather John James Sainsbury founded the family grocer’s in 1869.