British musician Robbie Williams and his American wife, model and actress Ayda Field, have cut the asking price of their English country estate. Now available for $9.2 million, Compton Bassett House, named for the nearby village in Wiltshire, was purchased by Williams in 2009 for about $11 million. It’s been on and off the market since 2010 at various prices; if sold at the current asking price, Williams stands to lose about $2 million.
“Compton Bassett House has been the perfect escape for our family,” the former Take That singer related in a press release through estate agents Knight Frank. Listing agent Rupert Sweeting, in a statement, said, “Although our clients are sad to be leaving, they’re certain that the next owners will love it as much as they have.”
However, last year on Instagram Live, the singer revealed that the house “gives him the creeps” and that his daughter had been scared to sleep in one of the rooms. He said, “We have got a very, very old property. It is like a thousand years old. There is one room that I am suspicious of. It gives me the creeps. Teddy, our daughter, was sleeping in there. She doesn’t any more.”
Far from a thousand years old, the house actually dates to 1935. A baronial manor house stood at Compton Bassett in 1553, shortly after Sir John Marvyn purchased the property from the Crown. It was a later house, which existed in 1659, that was first called Compton Bassett House. In the 19th century, the house was encased in brick and fake battlements added, but that building was demolished in the early 1930s. The house that is there now is the former stable block, converted to a residence in 1935. It was extensively altered in the early 1990s when the house was owned by Pritzker-Prize winning architect Sir Norman Foster, possibly best known these days for the pickle-shaped London skyscraper — “the Gherkin” as it’s known — and the torus-shaped headquarters of Apple Computer in Cupertino, California.
For those who don’t believe in ghosts (and have lots of money), Compton Bassett House represents a delightful opportunity. It boasts its own football pitch, tennis court, swimming pool and helicopter pad in its 71.5 acres of the land. The unconventionally configured house spans nearly 20,000 square feet, with a very spacious kitchen, several attractive sitting rooms, and a deluxe homeowner suite, plus two children’s bedroom suites and four more bedroom suites with adjoining sitting rooms. For the staff, there are two one-bedroom flats and a detached cottage.
The lower level “leisure complex,” a popular feature of luxury homes in rainy England, where an indoor pool will get more use than an outdoor one, includes the pool, hot tub, gym, steam room, sauna and changing rooms. The gardens include acres of rolling lawns, paddocks for horses, a waterlily pond, and an alluring summerhouse/gazebo that overlooks the tennis court.
The singer, whose most recent studio album, his 12th, was a Christmas album, in 2019, has long maintained an international portfolio of homes. He recently purchased a $32 million villa near Switzerland’s Lake Geneva. In Los Angeles, where in 2019 he sold a hillside home in Malibu for $28 million to Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, he’s maintained a 10-bedroom mansion in Beverly Hills since 2015 when he picked it up for $32.7 million. Back in London, in 2014, he bought a £17 million historic home in London’s Kensington that quickly caused disputes and complaints with their next-door neighbor, Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page. Page complained that Williams’ plan to install a basement swimming pool would damage his own house, the historic Tower House. Page lost that battle in 2018 and Williams was granted permission for his pool.