Home   Canterbury   News   Article

Boomtown Spat: Superstar Bob Geldof in bitter row with neighbour over new gate near Davington home

By Lauren Fruen
Disputed blocked-up gateway between Davington Cottages and Davington Priory, where Sir Bob Geldof lives
Disputed blocked-up gateway between Davington Cottages and Davington Priory, where Sir Bob Geldof lives

Superstar Bob Geldof is facing a bitter battle to stop his neighbour building a gate near his Kent home.

Faversham's most famous resident has fallen out with a nearby homeowner after an application was submitted to Swale Borough Council.

Deborah Reynolds wants to reinstate an old opening in the wall of the former Boomtown Rat's country estate in Davington.

Sir Bob Geldof
Sir Bob Geldof

She says the gate will give her better access to the garden of her Grade II-listed, end-terrace house - which stands right next to Sir Bob's land.

But the Live Aid legend is opposing her planning application and says putting a gate in his wall poses a security risk.

In his letter of objection, Sir Bob, 61, writes: "The application is made with a view to opening a "gate" in the wall [...] which encloses the Davington Priory grounds.

"This is in fact the boundary wall to my house and gardens. The Priory grounds abut directly hard up against Cottage No.8

"I oppose this application because permission will not be given to the applicant to undertake these changes to my property.

"In addition, I will not allow any right of way over my land between the gateway and the rear garden of 8 Davington Hill.

"Therefore the application is a specious waste of resources of the district authority and others.

"I further object on grounds of loss of amenity. To open a 'gate' at this point in the boundary wall of my property will be a tangible security risk to it.

"During the three decades I have occupied the house it was only by reluctantly creating a fenced boundary onto Dark Hill and by growing hedges [...] that I have been able to finally stop repeated encroachments onto my grounds."

The entrance to Davington Priory, where Sir Bob Geldof lives
The entrance to Davington Priory, where Sir Bob Geldof lives

Ms Reynolds, 43, wants to put the opening in an area where a gate previously existed before it was bricked over in the 1930s.

She said: "The land is not shared - it is my land. I am proposing to re-instate a side access gate adjacent to my property to enable myself to have side access."

Ms Reynolds' cottage was once part of the Davington Priory estate, where Sir Bob has lived for 30 years.

Villagers said they supported their famous neighbour's opposition to the gate.

Blocked-up gateway next to Davington Cottages and in the wall of the priory at the centre of a dispute involving Bob Geldof
Blocked-up gateway next to Davington Cottages and in the wall of the priory at the centre of a dispute involving Bob Geldof

Jaqueline Hitchcock, 86, said: "In the past people have jumped over the wall into Bob's grounds.

"If there is a gate directly into his land then there certainly would be a security risk for him.

"There is no need to put the gate in. I cannot understand why there is a problem with access to the cottage."

Retired publican Terence Boulton, 66, said "Bob isn't usually up himself or anything like that.

"He's very approachable and doesn't act like a superstar. He talks to people and is often seen walking around the town."

At a meeting of Faversham Town Council, councillors said they had no objection to the plans that would see the gate opposite the home in Davington Hill restored.

Councillors discussed the proposal after it emerged ownership of the land is in dispute.

Cllr Mick Gates said: "If the land is owned by Bob Geldof then he is right. If it is owned by the applicant then they are right. How can we comment if we do not know who owns the land? I think we should wait and see if the legal tangle is sorted out."

But consultant architect John Sell said a decision should be made on the plan itself.

He said: "The danger is we may lose the ability to comment at all."

Davington Church on the Davington Priory estate
Davington Church on the Davington Priory estate

A decision on Ms Reynolds' application is due to be announced on August 22.

Follow us

Like Us on Facebook

Most popular

Kent Travel News

Close This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.Learn More