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Great Britain Fairways, former home of Ronnie Corbett August 2020

2XploreUK

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Been a while since I managed to get out anywhere, what with the state of the world and being considered an essential worker BUT...I FINALLY managed to make time for this one. I’ve had my eye on it since last year and have seen a few people here and there have posted about it (although I couldn’t find any here?) so, a brief history ...

Legendary Comedian Ronnie Corbett moved into Fairways (named so as it backs, and apparently has access to, Addington Golf Course) in 1970 after purchasing the property for £1.3M. He and his wife Anne lived in the mansion for some 33yrs before he sold it to businessman Roy Griffiths in 2003. According to newspaper reports Roy had offered the couple to dinner on several occasions but always had his offer declined as the house held “too many memories” for Ronnie and Anne. It appears that Mr Corbett didn’t actually want to leave his beloved home but feared his daughters, Emma and Sophie, would be encumbered with a 40% inheritance tax so instead he chose to sell and gift them the money.

The 6-bedroom home was then purchased by Ortisé Williams, a Croydon-born member of X-Factor famed boy band JLS for £3M in 2013 who planned to renovate the property with his then-girlfriend AJ Azari. In 2016 Williams was charged, and later in 2019 acquitted of, rape and due to his appending trial the renovation project was put on hold. Days before his acquittal on Tuesday 4th June 2019 a “suspected” arson attack on the house reportedly destroyed 80% of the 2 upper floor sections. The Fire Brigade were called at 16:27 and around 70 firefighters and 10 engines attended the blaze and reported at 18:58 that it was then under control. According to reporters at the scene, neighbours had seen vandals throwing rocks at and breaking several windows of the house earlier in the week. Williams put Fairways back on the market at £1.75M....I don’t believe a buyer has yet been found.

To the Explore!

I live about 2min drive from the former home of legendary British comedian Ronnie Corbett who sadly passed away in 2016. I’d noticed that security had been quite prevalent, due to the nature in which this house came to be abandoned in the first place I suppose! Not long after the lockdown was relaxed here in south London, and as I drive by this place almost daily, I noticed that security seemed to be attending less and less. After looking around on the internet I’d noticed that a handful of others had explored here so.....bank holiday weekend....nothing else to do.....go check it out.

making our way through the trees was a little scary, I’m not going to lie lol. The golf course is LITERALLY the back garden of this place! After making sure the coast was clear we (my wife and I) slipped inside. WOW!.....the first room, although damaged and stuff...was AMAZING! A beautiful high wooded balcony sits at the front of what I assume is a greeting/waiting room. The LIGHT the room still gets despite being boarded is incredible! Making our way silently (as I’d read that often security sits outside the front door in a van...I hadn’t been round the front yet) there are 2....yes 2! Toilet rooms, both directly opposite one another but one is more of a “wet room” as apposed to the other “just toilet and sink”. The wonderful staircase that hugs the front door is STILL in great condition on the surface....lovely open swirl up past vast light-giving windows! Amazing!

Still downstairs, after the lovely staircase is what would have been a GRAND kitchen, complete with double oven, island and space for a dinning table or 2 lol. Out through a little side door is the back stairwell but before that a few steps down is the pantry, fully plumbed and decked out with vintage black and white floor tiles. I avoided the basement as I’d heard it was flooded and smelled....nobody had time for that! Lol.......UPWARDS THEN!

walking up the rear stairwell was a little tricky as, at 6ft3, the ceiling was a little closer to my head then I would have liked! To the left, a small, blue, cartoon sticker covered toilet that looks at though the stickers may have been from Ronnie’s era as owner of the house (I’m sure I saw a couple of 70’s Micky Mouses on there somewhere). Rounding the hallway you come to a bedroom on the right where the roof has almost fully collapsed into followed by a bathroom which is in the same state. Opposite, what I assume would be another 2 bedrooms with equal roof damage. Tracking back round to the rear stairs you come across a small left turn, this takes you to the top of the front stair case....the view is as nice from the top as it is the bottom! Following the hallway leads you into the master bedroom. Incredible! Large area complete with indoor Jacuzzi, walk-in shower and wet room! The back corner contains a walk-in wardrobe which is actually a room with floor to ceiling windows and a balcony with a lovely garden view! Opposite is a small wooden staircase that takes you to another dressing area above the bedroom. After visiting this room we had been in the house for approximately an hour or so and there wasn’t really much else to see (if anyone makes it into the garage, let me know lol) so we slunk off the same way we went in.....then sat behind the fence to the main road for about 20mins because some cyclists decided to have a natter!

attached are some snaps of the place. Sorry if the report is a little long!

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2XploreUK

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Bet that place was something in the past, real shame they get into this mess.
Absolutely. I’ve seen some of the pictures from the online site that it was for sale on and wow...the place was stunning!
 

2XploreUK

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Interesting report and photos. Even it's in bad condition now, it must have been a great property once.
Some of the pictures from when it was on sale were amazing! You can still see in some of the rooms that they would have been beautiful, not to mention the layout and structure....amazing building
 
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