And finally… Pitch Perfect – though Rod Stewart in the dark over plans for new mansion

Rod Stewart football planRod Stewart has been given the go-ahead to build a football pitch at his new £5 million mansion as long as he does not have floodlights.

The musician submitted plans for an 3G artificial turf pitch at Durrington House in Harlow, Essex, despite being forced to give up playing the game through injury.

Epping Forest District Council have now approved the five-a-side pitch on the site, which will have a car park with 20 spaces next to it and will be surrounded by fencing and trees.

He had originally wanted to put up floodlights at the 164ft by 101ft pitch to allow matches to take place at night but officials rejected that proposal, saying the lights were not appropriate next to the historic Grade II listed property.

They also ruled that evening matches could be a noise nuisance for Stewart’s neighbours.

“The artificial surface is an incongruous addition within the grounds of a mid-18th century house, however, the existing screening provided and hedging trees and the proposal to supplement these with additional native species will minimise views of the pitch and diminish the harm caused to the settings of the buildings,” council officers said in their report.

“There would inevitably be some level of noise emanating from the use of the pitch especially if two teams were to play with family and friends spectating.

“However, without the floodlighting it wouldn’t be able to be used late into the evening for much of the year and any noise nuisance can be dealt with under separate environmental health legislation.

“There are no objections in principle. A larger proposal was approved at the previous property that the applicant owned and the difference between the artificial turf and natural grass is not considered unacceptable.”

The singer bought the ten-bedroom 18th-century house on the edge of Epping Forest for £4.65m in 2013 but is only now set to move in.

Stewart, a Celtic fan, has admitted he has had to retire from his regular football matches because of injuries to his knees.

However, the 71-year-old still enjoys a kickabout with his youngest sons aged ten and four.

Think you can do better than our Editor? Come up with your own pun regarding today’s And Finally. Note ‘The sod cut is the deepest’ has already been taken!

Send your entries to

Contributions from SCN readers to our “And finally…” section are welcome – they should be sent to:

Share icon
Share this article: