New owners of Cilla Black’s Buckinghamshire mansion have plans to revamp pool thrown out

THE new owners of a multimillion-pound Bucks property that formerly belonged to a singer and icon of British television have had their plans to revamp the pool area thrown out by the council.

Monday, 26th April 2021, 3:49 pm
Updated Monday, 26th April 2021, 3:50 pm
The current pool area

The former home of Blind Date host Cilla Black has seen a number of redevelopments since it became the property of Cecilia Elrin and Damian Gully after the star’s death in 2015 – but Bucks Council determined the pair’s latest proposal for a replacement pool building to be an “inappropriate development”, reports indicate.

The existing pool building, located within the grounds of The Grove, on Tilehouse Lane, in Denham, is estimated to be around 35 years old and is “due to be replaced”, according to a design and access statement.

However, the council felt the new pool building would be “harmful to the Green Belt”, and that there were “no very special circumstances” to merit an exception.

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Here's the current set up

The existing pool would have remained having been refurbished, but the building around it would have been demolished and replaced, according to council documents.

The pair also had plans to upgrade the changing rooms and storeroom, and to ‘introduce a little more sitting area’ inside the new, larger structure.

Liverpool born singer and presenter Cilla bought the 17-acre, eight-bedroom estate, valued in 2015 at £3.8million, with husband Bobby Willis in 1970, according to the MailOnline.

There the couple raised their three sons Robert, Ben and Jack, and it was the home of the Surprise Surprise host for 45 years, the MailOnline wrote.

James Bond actor Sir Roger Moore was a neighbour of Cilla’s from 1970 to 1978, it added.

Mr Gully and Ms Elrin have carried out a number of redevelopment projects since they took over the property when Cilla died in 2015, the MailOnline wrote.

An earlier application to demolish a playroom, conservatory and two chimneys, and to build a two-storey rear extension and a single-storey side extension was granted conditional permission.

There is also mention of a garden room extension.

Cilla died at her holiday home in Estepona, Spain, having had a stroke and hitting her head while sunbathing, according to the MailOnline.

She was 72 years old.

A council planning officer said: “The proposal…does not fall within any of the categories of specified exceptions for development within the Green Belt and as such, the proposed development constitutes inappropriate development in the Green Belt which by definition is harmful to the Green Belt.”

They added: “No very special circumstances exist in this case sufficient to warrant an exception to Green Belt policy.”

They also said due to an admin error the proposal “does not meet the relevant criteria for assessment”.