As Michael Owen’s daughter, Gemma, seeks romance on Love Island, I hear the former England striker’s new horse-trainer partner is ringing the changes at one of the country’s most opulent stately homes.
For Manderston, which is headed up by Adrian, 4th Lord Palmer, is breaking its bond with Berwickshire Hunt, reputedly the oldest hunt in Scotland, after 124 years.
To the shock and sadness of members, I can reveal the hunt has been asked to move its hounds elsewhere. The Berwickshire Hunt declines to discuss its eviction, but I’m told that the instructions were given by Lord Palmer’s son and heir, Hugo, 41 — an acclaimed horse trainer now forging a new partnership with Owen, at Owen’s Manor House Stables in Cheshire.
The Berwickshire Hunt has been asked to move it hounds from Manderston, the stately home headed up by Adrian, 4th Lord Palmer. The instructions are thought to have been given by Lord Palmer’s son and heir, Hugo. Pictured: Hugo Palmer (left), with Michael Owen (right), at Chester Racecourse
The Berwickshire Hunt, reputedly one of the oldest in Scotland, has been based at Manderston for 124 years. Pictured: Members of the Berwickshire Hunt
‘The hunt received a notice to quit in a very short time, by September 1,’ a hunt supporter tells me, explaining that Hugo took over the running of Manderston and its estate a while ago. ‘Apparently, there are plans for development.’
Currently preparing for Royal Ascot in two weeks, where he has three runners, including the much-fancied Dubawi Legend, Hugo is too busy to comment.
But a friend tells me: ‘Manderston is a coveted wedding venue but it costs hundreds of thousands a year to run. Hugo has to make it work economically.’
The hounds, he adds, were in kennels at an attractive farmhouse on the estate — a property which could bring in much more rented out commercially than the peppercorn rent paid by the hunt.
Chelsy takes new family to meet the old family
Following my disclosure that Prince Harry’s ex-girlfriend Chelsy Davy secretly married English hotelier Sam Cutmore-Scott, the newlyweds have been spotted on their first family holiday to South Africa.
The couple were seen in Cape Town, where I hear they’ve been introducing their newborn son Leo to family and friends.
‘It’s been so heart-warming for Chelsy’s loved ones to spend time with both her husband and son,’ a friend tells me.
Newlyweds Chelsy Davy and Sam Cutmore-Scott have been spotted on their first family holiday in South Africa
Zimbabwean born Chelsy, 36, who runs a jewellery and luxury travel business, managed to keep her pregnancy under wraps and gave birth to Leo at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital in January. She only hinted she was in a serious relationship in 2020, but did not give her new man’s name, explaining: ‘There is someone — and I am quite taken by this one — but it’s very new and I don’t want to say too much.’
She and Cutmore-Scott, 37, who was in the year above Harry at Eton College, live together in Chiswick, West London.
Could the Elvis biopic be director Baz Luhrmann’s last work for the big screen? He tells me: ‘The only person on my hit list is my retirement. I only make a movie every ten years, so I might not have much left in me for another one.’
Victoria’s sad tribute
Lady Victoria Hervey has paid tribute to her friend Princess Kasia Al Thani of Qatar, who was found dead, aged 45, from a suspected drug overdose in Marbella on Sunday. ‘Kasia was a fashion icon, elegant, gracious and an incredible mother,’ she tells me.
Lady Victoria Hervey (left), pictured with Princess Kasia Al Thani of Qatar, who was found dead, aged 45, from a suspected drug overdose in Marbella on Sunday
Kasia, who was of Polish origin, was the third wife of billionaire Abdelaziz bin Khalifa Al-Thani, 73, the uncle of the current Emir of Qatar.
The mother-of-three recently lost a bitter custody case against her ex-husband.
The former Newsnight presenter Emily Maitlis, 51, is mourning the loss of her father Peter, a renowned scientist, who has passed away at the age of 89. ‘He will be very sorely missed,’ says his family. The late Fellow of the Royal Society became professor of chemistry at Sheffield University in 1972. He was then made an emeritus professor when he retired in 2002.
Tattoo too, Amanda?
Tattoos are usually a symbol of rash youth — but it appears at the age of 65, Amanda Burton may be joining Dame Judi Dench and David Dimbleby, who decided to get inked later on in life.
The Silent Witness star was spotted leaving the Old Town Tattoo shop in Hastings. She could be seen clutching a piece of paper — perhaps with a design for an inking. Amanda recently reprised her role as Sam Ryder on the BBC series for its 25th anniversary, saying: ‘It took me by surprise.’
Amanda Burton was seen leaving a tattoo shop on the South Coast recently, raising suggestions she could be planning to get inked
Oasis lead singer Liam Gallagher isn’t too worried about his younger counterparts stealing his limelight — for he thinks they’re too ‘wimpy’ to be deserving of rock ‘n’ roll star status.
Gallagher, who turns 50 in September, says: ‘There’s a lot of s**t out there, so if they’re buzzing off a 50-year-old man, they’re getting all wimpy, aren’t they?
‘Especially in the rock ‘n’ roll kind of vibe, not just the music side of things but also behaving like a rock star.’
Surely this isn’t the same Liam Gallagher who earlier this year revealed he swaps alcohol for jasmine tea and no longer smokes or eats dairy on the days he’s performing.
Hmmm, not too rock ‘n’ roll then…