Brighton Rocks


Well so say all the celebrities who live on the beach. Wanna join them?

A house has come on the market on Brighton and Hove’s very own Millionnaire’s row.

Hidden behind an industrial site, but with a private stretch of beach, the owners of the eleven homes at Western Esplanade are more likely to be slebs than stockbrokers.

The current crop include Nick Berry, Zoe Ball and Fat Boy Slim, David Walliams, and Heather Mills (who also owns the veggie cafe a mere toe-stubbing stumble across the rocky beach away).

Despite their frankly dubious semi-industrial location at the far end of Hove (in fact they’re in Portslade, a much less chi-chi address), the houses have always been hugely desirable.

Built in 1910 they were originally rented out as a luxury winter retreat at seven guneas a night. But the second world war put an end to all that frippery when they were commandeered by the military, painted black and camoflaged from passing enemy aircraft.

But they were soon back in fashion and guests at parties held in the row over the years have apparently included Frank Sinatra, Ava Gardner, Lord Snowdon, Shirley Bassey, Danny La Rue and Russ Conway. In fact it was at a New Year’s Eve party in 1952 that Donald Campbell asked the owner of no.1, Lew Norris, and his brother Ken, to design Bluebird K7, the vehicle in which he broke all known speed records and died on Coniston Water in January 1967.

In the 60s and 70s, notable residents included the film producer Oscar Lowenstein, interior designer Susan Wilding, wife of the British actor Michael Wilding, and broadcaster and former editor of the Express, Star and News of the World, Derek Jameson.

But it hasn’t all been sunny days and sandcastles for the current resident stars. In 2003 they took legal action to prevent  juggernauts from thundering past their seafront homes. They failed, but it doesn’t seem to have put anyone off.

This latest home for sale is a four-bed, two-bath house with a garage and roof terrace. Price on application from Jackson Stops and Staff (01243 213589).

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