Council backs Robbie Williams’ swimming pool plan despite Jimmy Page’s objection
Singer Robbie Williams’ plans for an underground swimming pool have been conditionally approved – despite objections from his Led Zeppelin guitarist neighbour Jimmy Page.
The decision could put an end to the five-year battle between the celebrity musicians over proposals for 44-year-old Williams’ home in Melbury road, in Kensington, west London.
Planning permission for the ex-Take That singer’s underground gym and swimming pool linked to his Grade II listed home, Woodland House, was approved with conditions at a committee meeting at Kensington Town Hall on Tuesday.
Page, 74, had raised fears construction work could damage his Grade I listed gothic revival mansion, Tower House, and its ornately decorated interior of stained glass, decorative plasterwork and ceramic tiling.
However, work cannot commence until councillors receive assurances about independent monitoring of vibration levels and ground movement as well as the consideration of extra conditions, such as the possibility of workers using only hand tools.
They will also discuss whether to ask Williams for a bond, which could be forfeited if the conditions were breached or if any damage occurs.
Committee chairman councillor Quentin Marshall suggested the celebrities should meet and try and put their differences aside.
Mr Marshall said: “It seems they are not that far apart. It’s slightly frustrating – I know the two principles are very busy, but surely they can find a way to talk, which might lock many of the problems.”
After the meeting, a spokesman for Page, who bought the turreted redbrick property in 1972, said the rock legend is happy to meet pop star Williams.
“From Jimmy’s point of view he will be reassured that the committee of councillors are taking the protection of the house seriously,” he said.
He added: “He wants Robbie to come back with proposals that eliminate all risk to the Tower House.”
The Stairway To Heaven guitarist said vibrations and ground movement in particular could cause irreversible damage, with the homes around 13 metres apart.
Representatives for Williams previously said any construction work would fall within stringent regulations and any effects on surrounding properties would be “negligible”.