James May’s new £3 million home in West London is nearing completion and will house his huge motorbike and car collection. Recent images show that the builders working on the property have taken down the hoardings and exposed the new building and garage, and it looks great.
It is believed that the home could even be completed before the lockdown has finished, with building work being permitted to start up again – as well as this, it is clear all that remains to do is add some finishing touches before May can move into his new digs.
May bought two houses and demolished both of them to make room for his new place. Back in 2000 he bought the first property for an estimated £325,000 and then in 2015 bought the semi-derelict property next door for around £310,000.
May, as you would imagine, has quite the vehicle collection and has recently moved his extensive stock to a nearby area in Hammersmith, London ready to be moved into the new property. Being one of the top motoring journalists and one of the most famous faces in automotive history (he was named the sixth greatest on screen automotive icon) it comes as no surprise that he owns over forty motorbikes, a Ferrari 458 Speciale, a Rolls Royce, a Porsche 911 and of course the infamous Fiat Panda he uses as his day to day.
Captain Slow has a bit of a reputation as being a bit of a nice guy and his new neighbours have echoed this as he made a special effort to include them in every step of the planning process to ensure his new home would not disrupt anyone on his street or take away from the streets aesthetics, where some homes were built back in the 1840’s. The Daily Mail spoke to a number of his neighbours who had nothing but praise for the Grand Tour star:
“I couldn’t wish for a better neighbour than James. He is a delight and has involved us all at every step of the way.”
His next door neighbour, Cathy Lewis, also agreed and was really happy with the whole process so far:
“James has been really good and given us lots of information. This will be really good for our street, will be a big improvement on what was there before and the designs are sympathetic to the area. We know it will take a long time with a lot of disruption, but so far, the builders have been great. The new house will look fabulous.”
James’ consultation meetings with his neighbours began back in 2015 as he was finalising all the plans and applying for planning permission – it is understood that the reason for James heavily involving the neighbours was to quell any concerns residents had surrounding being overlooked as the property features an extra floor. This could have had a negative impact on fellow neighbours house prices due to their view being blocked – something which can make a massive difference in London where house prices are already severely inflated and space/views are at a premium.
The planning permission was eventually approved in 2016 and James has since put in a number of amendments since then to ensure his fellow residents views were taken into account and to make sure the property won’t look out of place with the aesthetic of the street.
May admitted back in 2013 that the reason for his amazing new home was to appease his partner, dance critic Sarah Frater, saying:
“The permanent and fragrant presence of woman demands something a bit better.”
As well as this, James admitted that due to it being a new build, he’ll save quite a lot of money as new builds aren’t liable for VAT taxes.
We don’t have the rights to use the images of the property unfortunately but you can view them in all their glory, here.
I think we should all go and become world class motoring journalists, you get to drive an amazing variety of cars, get paid extremely well, can buy incredible houses and you get to have amazing adventures with your amigos. It can’t be that hard… right?