James Corden’s pool house plans scuppered by Historic England
James Corden has been forced to abandon plans for a pool house because of the presence of a nearby Neolithic monument.
The Gavin and Stacey actor bought Templecombe House, near Henley-on-Thames, Berkshire, in 2020, and is expected to move there with his family when he returns to the UK later this year after quitting the Late Late Show in America.
He was granted planning permission to demolish the old home and pool house and replace it with a new six-bedroom property after a planning meeting of Wokingham District Council earlier this month.
But planning documents show he also wanted new leisure facilities including an indoor and outdoor pool, a sauna and steam room alongside the development.
These plans have been dropped after Historic England said the new pool house was too close to the historic collection of 45 vertical granite megalithic stones that form a circle in the Grade II listed grounds.
The Mont de la Ville dolmen was first discovered on the Channel Island of Jersey in the 18th century and given, in 1788, as a present to governor Henry Seymour Conway, who was responsible for erecting many of the round towers that protected Jersey from French invasion.
Field Marshal Conway, as he later became, then had the dolmen transported to his Henley-on-Thames estate, where it was re-erected and remains to this day.
Officials in Jersey recently said they were hoping to return the monument back to the island and would seek support from Corden, who acquired it when he purchased Templecombe House last December, which cost him and his wife Julia £8.5 million.
In his report, planning official Simon Taylor said the planned pool house by Corden was originally “reduced in size and relocated further north due to harm to the setting of the Druid's Temple” but was eventually taken out altogether.
He said: “The council’s conservation officer, Historic England and the Gardens Trust were all consulted.
“Objections were initially raised in relation to the siting of the pool house as it would harm the significance of the Druid’s Temple and this area of the registered parkland.
“It is possible that the pool house and outdoor swimming pool will come forward in a future planning application to be considered at that time.”
Since the revisions, Historic England withdrew its objections and the planning committee approved the application with a number of conditions during a meeting on 11 January.
Corden's representatives have been approached for comment.