Homes gossip

Television’s hottest comedy star, James Corden, has tired of living in his home town High Wycombe and is moving to London
James Corden
© Rebecca Reid
James Corden

What’s occurring... as James forsakes High Wycombe

Television’s hottest comedy star and most unlikely Don Juan, James Corden, has tired of living in his home town High Wycombe and is moving to London. “Me and Dominic Cooper [his History Boys co-star] saw this penthouse around Clerkenwell,” he says.

The rotund, award-winning Gavin & Stacey actor/writer lives in a flat near his close-knit Salvation Army family. But his giddy social life, squiring such beauties as singer Lily Allen and X Factor winner Alexandra Burke, makes commuting difficult. Corden’s acting career is also rocketing, with his new BBC3 sketch show, Horne and Corden, and spoof horror film Lesbian Vampire Killers, both released this month.

Catherine Johnson
© Adrian Sherratt/Rex Features
Catherine Johnson
While the West End musical Mamma Mia! celebrates its 10th anniversary next month, its creator, Catherine Johnson, has acquired the ultimate literary status symbol — a writing den in her home town Bristol.

The flat is only a short walk from the five-bedroom detached house, complete with swimming pool, that she bought with her royalties from the award-winning Abba show.

She also has a London base in Pimlico which she shares with her second husband Michael Templar and two grown-up children. Impressive, since 11 years ago she was living on state benefits.

Mark Webber
© Reuters/Steve Holland
Mark Webber
Formula 1’s latest pin-up, Mark Webber, not only has his eye on winning the Australian Grand Prix this month but on profiting from the 2012 Olympics. At stake is his five-bedroom Grade II listed Aylesbury home, worth an estimated £1.2 million.

“I’d like to rent it out during the Games and get some good money for it,” says the Canberra-born driver. “It’s close to all the London airports and not far from the team.”

He and his girlfriend/manager Ann Neal moved there four years ago, having previously lived in Norfolk. Last year Webber earned £3.8 million driving for Red Bull Racing, which he hopes to invest in property both here and Down Under.

Georgina Rylance
© ITV/Rex Features
Georgina Rylance
Poirot and Inspector Linley actress Georgina Rylance is looking for a one/two-bedroom flat to rent in Notting Hill or Chelsea. This follows her return from living in Los Angeles, where she starred opposite Sam Neill and Sean Bean in the NBC TV serial Crusoe, based on the Daniel Defoe novel.

“Renting seems the ideal solution because I’m not ready to buy yet as I don’t know whether my career lies here or in America,” says the lissom daughter of circuit judge John Rylance. Four years ago she played Iraq whistle-blower Dr David Kelly’s daughter Rachel in C4’s controversial docudrama, The Government Inspector.

Should pop Svengali Simon Cowell decide to rent a musical retreat to entertain his protégés he should consider a new four-bedroom villa on the Caribbean paradise of St Barth’s.

With its state-of-the-art recording studio, two staff bungalows, his ’n’ hers swimming pools, cinema, bar, gym, croquet lawn, putting green and pool-room, Villa Rockstar is tailored to even the most demanding prima donna.

For £98,000 a week you have the service of a personal butler, Land Rover and Mini Cooper thrown in. “St Barth’s is where the St Tropez crowd spends its winters,”observes its owners, the five-star Eden Rock Hotel.

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