James Corden fought a planning war with he and Coldplay singer Chris Martin’s next-door neighbour over controversial plans to build an ‘iceberg basement’.
The pair were renting out their properties at up to £15,000-a-month each when their joint neighbour submitted proposals to build a large basement extension.
Corden, 42, who is rumoured to net up to £5million-a-year as host of The Late Late Show in the US, feared the plans could scupper the rental income from his four-storey £3.3million home.
In a bid to convince council planning chiefs to veto the plans, the comedian claimed the noise from the building work could impact on his tenants.
And, as part of the two-year planning battle, the London-born star submitted a formal objection to the proposals.
Coldplay front man Martin, who bought his London pad from Kate Winslet for £2.5million in 2004, did not formally objected to the plans.
But the singer, 44, was mentioned several times in planning documents submitted to local council chiefs.
Despite Corden’s objection, councillors gave the green light for the plans to go ahead – with much of the work now completed.
Representatives for Corden say the comedian no longer owns the Belsize property.
James Corden fought a planning war with he and Coldplay singer Chris Martin’s next-door neighbour over controversial plans to build an ‘iceberg basement’. Pictured: The London home that Corden owned
The comedian’s four-storey £3.3million home was connected to the comparatively small garage conversion (pictured) – thought to be worth around £600,000
Coldplay frontman Martin, who bought his London pad from Kate Winslet for £2.5million in 2004, has not formally objected to the plans
As part of a two-year planning battle, the London-born star submitted a formal objection to his neighbour’s proposals (pictured)
The bitter battle between Corden and his neighbour, Benjamin Miranda, began soon after the comedian purchased the four-storey townhouse in 2012.
The subterranean palaces under your feet: What is an iceberg basement?
The stunning multimillion-pound mansions and town houses of some of London’s fanciest districts are eye-catching enough from the outside.
But sometimes the stunning exterior is just the tip of the iceberg.
Built into the basements of some of these gorgeous properties are huge underground extension – with pools, spas and cinemas.
They have become increasingly popular in high-end neighbourhoods such as Chelsea, Kensington and Westminster.
Figures from 2008 to 2017, compiled by Newcastle University, show plans for almost 1,000 gyms, 376 pools, 456 cinemas, 381 wine stores and cellars and 115 staff rooms were given the green light by councils in London’s most prestigious areas.
One £25million mansion in Notting Hill which went on sale in 2018 boasted a double-layer basement with a 21-metre swimming pool – almost as big as your average leisure centre.
These subterranean palaces are not cheap, and not easy to build, with some taking two years to complete.
And it’s not always straight forward – which Goldman Sachs boss Christoph Stanger found out when part of his £7million Kensington home collapsed in 2012 while excavation work was being carried out.
Rules have been tightened in recent years – leading to a decline in demand.
Applications for basements lodged in Westminster fell by 27 per cent in 2019, according to the Times.
‘Buyers are becoming less excited about amenities that require maintenance and can easily go wrong,’ says Marc Schneiderman of north London prime estate agents, Arlington Residential, told the Telegraph.
Miranda’s comparatively tiny, two-floor, two-bed, converted garage is squeezed in-between Corden and Martin’s massive pads.
Corden first riled Miranda by applying for planning permission to Camden Council in February 2013.
The star submitted plans to erect a single story extension with roof terrace over to rear of the property.
Miranda wrote two letters of objection to the council in which he stated he’d even met Corden to talk about his plans and had been assured that they wouldn’t be building an ‘overpowering structure’.
Miranda was concerned that the extension would ’cause a boxing-in effect on an already small property’ and raised concerned that it was not ‘aesthetically pleasing’.
Corden won that round with planning permission being given two months later, but the bad blood had set in.
When Miranda applied in 2017 to build an entirely new basement, Corden raised fears the excavation work would cause permanent damage to both his and and Martin’s house.
It started two years of rows with Corden employing solicitors, construction consultants, surveyors, architects and luxury estate agents.
The planning professional produced reports against the development, which had added complications as the warring pair shared a communal walkway.
Corden’s solicitors Town Legal LLP wrote a letter in July 2018 claiming vital documents relating to the plans weren’t available on the council website and that Corden and wife Julia, 45, had been given false information.
At this point, Corden, who was pictured in 2014 moving into the property with the help of Hollywood star Anne Hathaway, wasn’t living at the Belsize Park home, having relocating to Los Angeles in 2015.
Instead he was renting the townhouse out to professionals.
In November 2018, his tenant management agents, Atlantic Swiss, sent a further letter of objection complaining that Miranda’s development would lead to some of Corden’s staff being given the sack if it was approved.
The letter also claimed that no professionals would want to rent the property during the ‘full-term of the works’, adding: ‘As a direct result of the inability to rent the property, we will lose revenue.
‘As a consequence this will affect the employment of three staff at the property.
The bitter battle between Corden (pictured) and his neighbour, Benjamin Miranda, began soon after the comedian purchased the four-storey townhouse in 2012
Martin, did not object to the plans but has been mentioned several times in planning documents submitted to local council chiefs
‘Namely, the housekeeper, gardener/building maintenance man and one of our building managers based at our office.
‘As the property is tenanted by professionals, they expect us to maintain a high level of service at all times. This will be impossible with building work on the doorstep.
‘I know the noise excavations can cause. As our tenants are professionals who will require quiet to work, the disruption will not be acceptable to them.’
In December 2018, Corden employed building consultants Ridge and Partners LLP to provide a ‘technical review of the construction program’.
Metropolis argued that Corden and Martin’s walls were at risk by the plans (pictured) and the development hadn’t demonstrated its ‘structural stability’
They claim that the works (pictured: Plans for the work) would take at least 37 weeks, the joint driveway would have to be closed for at least 30 weeks of it, and not only would it be noisy, but there’d be a ‘risk of vibration and movement’
They claimed that the works would take at least 37 weeks, the joint driveway would have to be closed for at least 30 weeks of it, and not only would it be noisy, but there’d be a ‘risk of vibration and movement’.
Planning experts and architects Metropolis wrote a further letter of objection in April 2019, and also produced a planning and design report.
The report stated that the basement extension didn’t ‘preserve the character’ of the area, and was ‘excessive depth and scale’.
Metropolis argued that Corden and Martin’s walls were at risk and the development hadn’t demonstrated its ‘structural stability’.
Yet despite Corden’s complaints, in July 2019, Camden Council approved the application, with some legal conditions, before being finally rubber-stamping the plans the following October.
Building work appears to have now just about finished on Miranda’s property as damp-proof specialists were seen visiting recently.
The council decision notice stated that it didn’t think there would be any substantial harm to Corden or Martin’s properties.
The notice adds: ‘Plan in so far as it would not cause harm to neighbouring properties; the structural, ground or water conditions of the area; the character and amenity of the area; the architectural character of the building; and the significance of heritage assets.’
Miranda did not respond to attempts for comment. MailOnline has contacted representatives for James Corden and Chris Martin for comment.
A representative for Corden said the comedian and his wife no longer own the property. Representatives for Martin declined to comment.