James Rothschild, who is engaged to Nicky Hilton, has just put his family’s historic Suffolk farm Rushbrooke up for sale for a whopping £24 million
The party-loving Hilton sisters are hardly the most likely converts to country living. Who can forget ditzy Paris’s disastrous attempts to get to grips with farmyard life on trashy reality show The Simple Life?
So when the hotel heiress’s equally pneumatic sibling Nicky, 31, marries banking scion James Rothschild this summer, she will doubtless be relieved to know that she will not be shoe-horned into the role of lady of the manor.
For James, 30, who proposed to Nicky on Lake Como in Italy last year, has just put his family’s historic Suffolk farm Rushbrooke up for sale for a whopping £24million.
The news has surprised locals since the 1,700 acre estate, near Bury St Edmunds, has been in the Rothschild family since 1938.
Ominously for those living locally, it is described by the selling agent as having ‘development potential’.
After being bought by James’s grandfather Victor, the third Lord Rothschild, the property became the beloved retreat of his tragic father Amschel, who was found dead in Paris’s Bristol Hotel in 1996 after hanging himself.
Said to have reluctantly been cajoled into joining the family banking business, Amschel was happiest working the estate’s arable farm. It included fruit trees from which he sold his own apple juice to London establishments.
James’s mother Anita subsequently remarried in 2002 to horse-racing figure James Wigan, and for a time she ran the estate’s stud.
Rushbrooke was the setting for James’s sister Kate’s doomed 2003 wedding to Ben Goldsmith. This might explain why Nicky Hilton — who was previously married to U.S. businessman Todd Meister for just three months — claimed last year she wanted a wedding in the capital.
‘I’ve always wanted a destination wedding and I love London, so I’m leaning towards London,’ she said.
The 1,700 acre estate (pictured), near Bury St Edmunds, has been in the Rothschild family since 1938
Tragic tycoon’s ex is all smiles
Noelle Reno, whose former fiancé, Dundee-born property tycoon Scot Young, jumped to his death from her fourth floor flat last December, revealed just a few weeks ago that she was looking forward to exploring a ‘new journey’.
That journey has taken Reno back to her homeland. For the adopted Brit, who was born in Seattle but has lived in Britain for more than a decade, attended a fashion book launch in Los Angeles on Wednesday.
The 32-year-old dazzled in a latticed yellow top thrown over a black leather dress.
Though the coroner’s office tells me a date for Young’s inquest won’t be set until June, self-described ‘fashion entrepreneur’ Noelle seems positively sunny.
‘That moment when you feel so incredibly blessed and grateful and just have to share it,’ she tweeted last week alongside the symbol of a ‘smiley face’.
Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein isn’t used to being snubbed during the awards season.
After his £10 million Broadway show Finding Neverland failed to score any Tony nominations, Weinstein assembled the cast and wheeled out a cake decorated with the words: ‘We nominate you the best cast on Broadway.’
He then told the team the snub was ‘a missile, squarely aimed at me’ and ‘had no reflection on them or what takes place onstage every single night’.
Don’t take it so personally, Harvey. Perhaps it was Gary Barlow’s dull and syrupy score, savaged by critics, which stuck in the craw of the Tony voters?
Susan Hill’s gothic ghost story The Woman In Black was turned into a play described as the ‘most terrifying theatrical experience’ in the West End.
However, it is the prospect of the SNP seizing power next Thursday that sends shivers down the author’s spine.
‘If the SNP takes over Scotland, Trident will go and Putin will walk in,’ she says of Russia’s bellicose president.
‘Make no mistake. That’s why we need nuclear — as a deterrent.’
BBC boss’s £220k gap year
Life imitates art at the BBC. Last month the creators of BBC2 satire W1A posted a job advert for the Director of Better as an April Fools’ Day joke.
Now the real-life Emma Swain, who boasts the W1A-style title Controller, Knowledge Commissioning, will take a year away from the role to ‘look at the kind of television programmes the BBC should be making five years from now and the platforms they should air on’.
Last month the creators of BBC2 satire W1A (programme pictured) posted a job advert for the Director of Better as an April Fools’ Day joke
Danny Cohen, the corporation’s Director of Television, said Swain is a ‘strong strategic thinker’ who is ‘perfect’ for the job, which apparently is incompatible with commissioning current shows.
Licence-fee payers can be reassured that Swain will still receive her £220,000 salary during this period of cogitation.