What’s an Oscar-winning actress to do when her multi-million-pound Victorian mansion set in many beautiful acres is not enough?
Take a leaf out of Ed Sheeran’s book, of course.
Cate Blanchett has been busy turning her English home into East Sussex’s answer to Sheeranville, the Suffolk ‘mini village’ belonging to the pop star.
Cate Blanchett pictured with Andrew Upton in 2017. Her seven-bedroom Victorian house is a short stroll from the modern farmhouse which was built in the historic style of a Wealden hall house
Just as the singer famously bought multiple properties around his country home, Miss Blanchett, 52, has paid close to £1.5million for a farmhouse in almost 100 acres near the home she has occupied for more than five years.
She also secured planning permission to demolish a run-down oast house and stable in the grounds of her mansion and create an art gallery and studio, complete with a circular meditation room.
‘Blanchettville’ lies on the edge of a village in the Sussex Weald near Crowborough.
Her seven-bedroom Victorian house is a short stroll from the modern farmhouse which was built in the historic style of a Wealden hall house.
It has timber framing, an oak front door and staircase, a brick-floored hall and a stone fireplace.
‘Blanchettville’ lies on the edge of a village in the Sussex Weald near Crowborough
Naturally there is an Aga in the kitchen, with a stable door to the outside, a galleried landing, and two of the three bedrooms are en-suite. A terrace outside boasts sweeping views of the countryside.
But more importantly for Miss Blanchett’s seclusion, the farmhouse came with close to 100 acres of pasture and woodland, and is reached only by a long access lane which now has new gates half way down.
It is not clear what the actress’s long-term plans are for the surrounding farmland but it has long been used commercially for a pedigree herd of beef shorthorn cattle, which moved on before the purchase was completed. Outbuildings include bull pens, stables, a tack room, and barns.
There are a number of ponds and hedges for diverting walks – and even a pair of Second World War pillboxes.
The only snag, if Miss Blanchett wanted friends and relatives to stay in the new house, is that there is an agricultural occupancy restriction on the property – meaning only those farming the land are allowed to live there.
Miss Blanchett has been busy turning her English home into East Sussex’s answer to Sheeranville, the Suffolk ‘mini village’ belonging to the pop star
She would have to apply for planning permission if she wanted to move in.
But her latest buy is in any case dwarfed in size and beauty by her mansion nearby.
Perhaps the real point is that her ownership will ensure no one else can move in and spoil the panoramic views she has been enjoying for years.
Miss Blanchett’s successful planning application for the transformation of what was an oast house in the grounds of her Victorian house features a circular mediation room, a stepped gallery and a studio workspace, as well as a walled lavender garden outside.
A neighbour said of the farmhouse purchase: ‘Cate didn’t hang around. She wanted the vendors out as soon as possible. We heard she wanted the property because of the land.’
Miss Blanchett, 52, has paid close to £1.5million for a farmhouse in almost 100 acres near the home she has occupied for more than five years
Further plans may meet resistance. The parish council opposed moves by another resident to turn a barn into a house, saying it was ‘unacceptable for the countryside location’.
Miss Blanchett lives in her mansion with Australian playwright husband Andrew Upton, 55, and their four children.
They paid over £3million for the house, and soon installed a state-of-the-art Stovax woodburner. They keep their own pigs and chickens and grow herbs and vegetables.
The actress, who won Oscars for roles in The Aviator and Blue Jasmine, told friends she ‘loved the green’ of the area.
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