Oxford Operatic Society are bringing Gary Barlow's heart-warming musical Calendar Girls to the stage - and wondering if the man himself will turn up.

The Take That singer and former X Factor judge owns a property in the West Oxfordshire village of Alvescot and there's even rumours the multi-millionaire has been drinking in the village pub, The Plough, but bar staff wouldn't confirm it.

An OxOps spokesperson said: "We would love him and his family to attend a performance but can't get a message through. I have been trying since January. Our president is BBC personality Charlie Ross, who has also been trying to contact him through his agent.

"I have offered his whole family complementary tickets and sent flyers with every attempt. I requested a message that could be read out on opening night if he was unable to attend a performance but, as I say, not a single reply."

The singer and his wife bought the Grade II-listed property for £2.3 million in 2007 and regularly spent time there with his wife Dawn and children Daisy, Daniel and Emily who are now grown up.

But the star has found himself involved in several planning dramas over the years.

In February 2019, his plans to build a new six-bedroom home in the garden of the property then estimated to be worth £6 million were rejected.

He asked for planning permission to build a new home - complete with TV snug room, study, and five bathrooms - in the garden, in August 2018.

But West Oxfordshire District Council refused, claiming the proposed new house would 'not respect' the historic surrounds of the pop star's nearby home.

Planning chiefs claimed his plans would 'extend the village' into the open countryside 'eroding the setting'.

In the rejection document, the head of planning and strategic housing added: 'By reason of the siting of the proposed dwelling and garage being outside of the built-up part of the village, the proposal does not form a logical complement to the existing scale and pattern of development and the character of the area.'

READ ALSO: £36m expansion of Raymond Blanc's Le Manoir restaurant approved

The star had previously been given permission to create a family area, relaxation zone, changing rooms and gym at the existing house.

In 2017 Mr Barlow backed villagers when they objected to developers' plans for 54 new properties near his home.

Oxford Mail:

The parish council also objected to those plans at the time, arguing that the development would 'destroy the sweeping vista across open country identified as a special characteristic of the village'.

But in 2020 Mr Barlow won a bat-tle to build a garage for his fleet of luxury cars.

The star demolished two paddocks on the estate to build a garage, garden store and workshop.

READ ALSO: Oxford's Foals, Supergrass and Glass Animals shine at Glastonbury

He has a range of luxury cars, believed to include a £100,000 Range Rover SDV8.

The Back for Good singer faced opposition from conservationists to convert part of his home – because a pair of pipistrelles nested in the roof.

But after a bat expert spent time monitoring the mammals’ movements he was allowed to pay £130 for a bat disruption licence and ensure the bats are “not harmed during works”.

The couple also agreed to install a bat box for them on a nearby tree.

  • Calendar Girls, A Musical by Gary Barlow and Tim Firth, which tells the story of members of the Women's Institute who decide to do an artistic nude calendar to raise money for charity, is at Oxford Playhouse from Monday July 11 - 16.

Read more from this author

This story was written by Miranda Norris, she joined the team in 2021 and covers celebrity and showbiz news across Oxfordshire as well as news from Witney.

Get in touch with her by emailing: Miranda.Norris@newsquest.co.uk

Follow her on Twitter @MirandaJNorris



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