Gary Cahill has been transferring his skills on the pitch to everyday life, putting up his best defence against a horde of disgruntled residents in Cobham, Surrey.
The Chelsea defender and his wife Gemma are planning to knock down a house in the town of Cobham, dubbed ‘the Beverly Hills of Britain’, to replace it with a £5 to £7million mega mansion. Cahill bought the plot of land last June for £1.9million but demolished the existing property just weeks later.
Despite the residents of Cobham having previously welcomed footballers to their idyllic village, with Chelsea FC’s training ground just around the corner, Gary has received an icy reception. Over a dozen residents in the Fairmile Estate were calling for a red card on Cahill’s proposed property, before planning permission was officially granted.
On the plus side it wasn’t all doom and gloom as there was one resident that didn’t seem to mind Cahill’s development; Mrs Barker. She wrote to Elmbridge Borough Council and praised the work that Hyatt Group (Cahill’s developers) would carry out. Mrs Barker explained that the “objections to date are unfounded as the scheme is no different in size to those recently approved, nor are there any trees of merit being removed. Significant boundary screening is to remain ensuring privacy to all sides. Separation to boundaries is also well considered.”
However, little did the council know that Mrs Jade C Barker is actually married to CEO of the Hyatt Group Ltd, Auday Tokatly and was their company secretary until 2011. But before Cahill, 30, has even moved in – and as just three men could be seen working on the foundations of the property this week – residents on the estate have already submitted a number of complaints.
Unlike the positive statement from Mrs Barker, one resident only described the building as a “huge block of cement” and that “it wasn’t ‘in keeping with the surrounding properties”. Another argued that it would be “ugly’ and out-of-keeping with the ‘spirit of our (their) semi-rural estate”.
The property itself will be spread over four floors. The five-bedroom house will boasts features such as a cinema, library, wine room and games room. It will even have the mandatory footballers gym, bar, boot room and staff living quarters. Fancy.
However, it looks like Cahill’s summer BBQs with the neighbours might be a lonely affair to say the least.