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Racing pundit John McCririck fumes over Baroness’s Primrose Hill basement build

PUBLISHED: 14:05 10 April 2015 | UPDATED: 14:05 10 April 2015

Racing pundit John McCririck. Photo credit: Tony Marshall/EMPICS

Racing pundit John McCririck. Photo credit: Tony Marshall/EMPICS

EMPICS Sport

When a New Labour Baroness and close friend of Tony Blair decided to make Primrose Hill her new home, Heathman expected an easy fit with the traditionally liberal community.

Dame Gail Rebuck. Picture: PA Archive/Steve Parsons.Dame Gail Rebuck. Picture: PA Archive/Steve Parsons.

Baroness Gail Rebuck snapped up a £4million pad with her now deceased husband, and architect of New Labour, Lord Philip Gould, in August of last year.

Obviously smitten with the four bedroom mews home, the chairwoman of global book publisher Penguin Random House was quick to future-proof her home by submitting plans to Camden Council for a basement extension.

But what she hoped would be a swift and painless project has turned into an almighty row – and has taught her the consequences of moving next door to the not-quite-so liberal John McCririck.

The racing pundit has declared war on “champagne socialist” Lady Rebuck and her basement.

In a letter of complaint sent to the council last year, the McCririck household blasted the development, complaining it would result in “prolonged and extensive engineering work which is likely to render other houses in the mews unstable”. Fearing they would see their mews blocked up with construction vehicles, suffer flooding and even collapse, Mr McCririck rallied his other neighbours to condemn Lady Rebuck.

Some eight months later, works have begun on the basement and the McCriricks are at the end of their tether.

Having no luck with the Labour-led council – which said its hands were tied in any attempt to block the development – this week Mr McCririck instead took his complaints straight to the Daily Mail newspaper.

The anti-Labour paper reported him as saying: “It’s just incessant drilling every weekday and we’ve no idea how long it is going on for.

“Of course the champagne socialist has absolutely no idea of the trouble she is causing; she’s only been here once to try and smooth-talk her way around it.”

Lady Rebuck says the proposed basement “falls within the current rights of permitted development”.


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