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Why is Cara Delevingne’s clan so keen to keep their lavish Christmas bash under wraps?

While millions were forced to cancel long-planned celebrations with family elsewhere in the country, Cara Delevingne enjoyed a Christmas fit for an aristocrat.

I hear the top model and actress’s father, Charles, hired a Palladian mansion in Oxfordshire for a lavish party for four generations of their family, complete with staff to deal with the more mundane tasks of seasonal cooking and cleaning.

‘Charles spent a fortune and went to some lengths to keep it all private,’ I’m told, ‘but the number of cars — plus the comings and goings of the staff — meant it was never likely to stay secret for long.’

The jamboree was held at Aynhoe Park, a 17th-century country pile where rocker Noel Gallagher threw a raucous 50th birthday party and Jade Jagger celebrated her wedding.

While millions were forced to cancel long-planned celebrations with family elsewhere in the country, Cara Delevingne enjoyed a Christmas fit for an aristocrat. I hear the top model and actress’s father, Charles, hired a Palladian mansion in Oxfordshire for a lavish party for four generations of their family, complete with staff to deal with the more mundane tasks of seasonal cooking and cleaning. Above, Cara with her sisters, Poppy (left) and Chloe (right)

The jamboree was held at Aynhoe Park (above), a 17th-century country pile where rocker Noel Gallagher threw a raucous 50th birthday party and Jade Jagger celebrated her wedding

The jamboree was held at Aynhoe Park (above), a 17th-century country pile where rocker Noel Gallagher threw a raucous 50th birthday party and Jade Jagger celebrated her wedding

Charles and his wife Pandora, who have homes in Tier 4 London and Sussex, hosted the party, which is understood to have been attended by Chloe, her sister Poppy and their families, as well as LA-based Cara and her grandmother, Jane Stevens. The only picture posted online by Cara was taken at Poppy's West London home weeks before Christmas. Cara said she was celebrating 'with the fam'. (Above, Cara, Poppy and their parents)

Charles and his wife Pandora, who have homes in Tier 4 London and Sussex, hosted the party, which is understood to have been attended by Chloe, her sister Poppy and their families, as well as LA-based Cara and her grandmother, Jane Stevens. The only picture posted online by Cara was taken at Poppy’s West London home weeks before Christmas. Cara said she was celebrating ‘with the fam’. (Above, Cara, Poppy and their parents)

The Grade I-listed property has 28 bedrooms and is packed with quirky treasures including giant glitterballs, a stuffed zebra rocking horse and a polar bear guarding ancient artefacts. Its gardens were designed by Capability Brown.

The house, which was visited by Charles I and Sir Winston Churchill, is owned by Charles Delevingne’s fellow property developer James Perkins, who made his fortune from raves. Perkins is a close friend of Cara’s sister Chloe.

Boris Johnson effectively cancelled Christmas for much of the country when he announced a new ‘stay at home’ order on December 19 that covered London and much of the south and east of England. 

Charles and his wife Pandora, who have homes in Tier 4 London and Sussex, hosted the party, which is understood to have been attended by Chloe, her sister Poppy and their families, as well as Los Angeles-based Cara and her grandmother, Jane Stevens.

The Delevingne sisters are prolific on social media and usually share photographs of their partying with millions of followers.

However, the only picture posted online by Cara was taken at Poppy’s West London home weeks before Christmas. Cara said she was celebrating ‘with the fam’.

In November, Cara reportedly attended Rita Ora's secret 30th birthday party, which the pop singer later apologised for hosting and offered to pay a fine. (Above, Cara in November)

In November, Cara reportedly attended Rita Ora’s secret 30th birthday party, which the pop singer later apologised for hosting and offered to pay a fine. (Above, Cara in November)

When I ask Charles about his hiring of Aynhoe, he remarks, nonchalantly: ‘And your point is?’

He insists it’s ‘wrong’ to suggest they breached restrictions, but declines to give further details.

In November, Cara reportedly attended Rita Ora’s secret 30th birthday party, which the pop singer later apologised for hosting and offered to pay a fine.

The party came less than a week after Cara attended an awards ceremony in LA, despite the 14-day quarantine order for travellers landing in the UK.

The smart set’s talking about… Suki’s hopes to hit a high note 

Best known as the model girlfriend of Hollywood heart-throb Robert Pattinson, Suki Waterhouse is determined to make a name for herself in the pop charts.

The 28-year-old tells me she’s been spending this crisis recording music. ‘I’m making an album, which is cool, and there’s little things happening with it,’ she says.

Best known as the model girlfriend of Hollywood heart-throb Robert Pattinson, Suki Waterhouse is determined to make a name for herself in the pop charts

Best known as the model girlfriend of Hollywood heart-throb Robert Pattinson, Suki Waterhouse is determined to make a name for herself in the pop charts

A previous single, Brutally, failed to make the top 200 tracks in the UK’s download charts, but Suki is undeterred.

‘I like collaborating with a feast of friends,’ adds the actress, who’s promoting her bottle design for Waterdrop. ‘I like lo-fi ‘dream pop’, but also simple folk.’

How about a duet with Pattinson? The Twilight star recently sang on the film soundtrack for High Life.

Hugh Bonneville reveals he's plagued by people trying to steal his identity online

Hugh Bonneville reveals he’s plagued by people trying to steal his identity online

Here’s one problem the Earl of Grantham never had to face: Downton star Hugh Bonneville reveals he’s plagued by people trying to steal his identity online. 

‘Roughly every two weeks, some numpty who can’t spell sets up two new accounts pretending to be me,’ he wails. 

‘They send naff private messages to people who follow me, hoping to lure them into a weird cave under a rock near the sea anemones of their imagination.’ 

This week, Bonneville was heard reading A History Of The Bible on Radio 4. 

Perhaps he could find it in his heart to forgive those that trespass against him.

Cricketer Stuart bowls Mollie over with a sparkler

Bracing walks are just what’s called for after New Year’s Eve celebrations, and they’re even more enjoyable if your boyfriend gets down one one knee and pops the question.

That’s what happened to pop star Mollie King yesterday, when England cricket hero Stuart Broad proposed. 

‘I still can’t believe it,’ gushes The Saturdays singer and former Strictly semi-finalist, who shared this snap, showing off her sparkler. ‘The most magical start to the new year.’

Bracing walks are just what's called for after New Year's Eve celebrations, and they're even more enjoyable if your boyfriend gets down one one knee and pops the question. That's what happened to pop star Mollie King (above) yesterday, when England cricket hero Stuart Broad proposed

Bracing walks are just what’s called for after New Year’s Eve celebrations, and they’re even more enjoyable if your boyfriend gets down one one knee and pops the question. That’s what happened to pop star Mollie King (above) yesterday, when England cricket hero Stuart Broad proposed

'I still can't believe it,' gushes The Saturdays singer and former Strictly semi-finalist, who shared this snap, showing off her sparkler. 'The most magical start to the new year'

‘I still can’t believe it,’ gushes The Saturdays singer and former Strictly semi-finalist, who shared this snap, showing off her sparkler. ‘The most magical start to the new year’

Accountant’s daughter Mollie, 33, has been courted for two years by fast bowler Broad, 34. 

She had previously spoken of her worries as he prepared to head to Sri Lanka on tour.

She admitted she was feeling ‘anxious and uncertain’ and would miss the privately educated sportsman ‘so much’. 

She said: ‘I often get the January blues and this year is going to be especially tough with everything that’s going on.’

Broad was nominated for BBC Sports Personality Of The Year after claiming his 500th Test wicket.

Accountant's daughter Mollie, 33, has been courted for two years by fast bowler Broad, 34. (Pictured, Stuart and Mollie at Wimbledon in 2019)

Accountant’s daughter Mollie, 33, has been courted for two years by fast bowler Broad, 34. (Pictured, Stuart and Mollie at Wimbledon in 2019)

Lots of love for Sotheby’s boss 

The mercury might be plunging, but things are hotting up between colourful Sotheby’s chairman Harry Dalmeny and art advisor Harriet Clapham.

I hear the Old Etonian, 53, has already moved the enchanting 31-year-old in with him. 

They spent Christmas at his family’s Dalmeny House, on the Firth of Forth, with his five children from his marriage to former Conservative Party researcher Caroline Daglish. ‘Lockdown really fast-tracked the relationship,’ a friend tells me.

‘She gets on with his children, especially his daughters. They even decorated the house together.’

The Earl of St Germans, who inherited his title and the 4,000-acre Port Eliot estate in Cornwall at the tender age of 11, has a new brother.

I hear his mother, Bianca, who was once engaged to Earl Spencer, gave birth three days before Christmas. The baby’s father is her boyfriend, Mark Tamburrano, 38.

‘He’s been named George,’ a family friend tells me. ‘His birth was the most wonderful Christmas present.’

Former model Bianca was left a widow at 29 when her husband, Lord Eliot, died in 2006 following an epileptic fit.

They had three children including the Earl, Albie, who’s now 16.

Sir Harry Cotterell married effervescent blonde divorcee Katherine Elias (above) in 2002

Sir Harry Cotterell married effervescent blonde divorcee Katherine Elias (above) in 2002

Fergie’s baronet pal Sir Harry kicks off the year with divorce 

When the Duchess of York’s friend Carolyn Beckwith-Smith died of cancer aged 43, Sarah was distraught at the loss of ‘my angel’. 

But there was some consolation when Carolyn’s widower, Sir Harry Cotterell, found love again three years later.

The baronet, who owns Garnons, an idyllic 5,000-acre Herefordshire estate with its own cricket ground, married effervescent blonde divorcee Katherine Elias in 2002.

However, what Fergie hoped would prove to be a fairy tale ending has unravelled, I can disclose. ‘Katherine has moved out and the marriage is over,’ a friend tells me. 

Former Household Cavalry officer Sir Harry confirms that divorce proceedings are under way.

Former Household Cavalry officer Sir Harry confirms that divorce proceedings with Katherine are under way. (Sir Harry, above, with the Duchess of York)

Former Household Cavalry officer Sir Harry confirms that divorce proceedings with Katherine are under way. (Sir Harry, above, with the Duchess of York)

The friend claims Katherine, 53, is being comforted by Fergie’s ex, Paddy McNally, 88, the buccaneering Anglo-Irishman with a £600million fortune. 

Last year, Katherine changed the registered address for her company, Abka, from Garnons to that of a Wiltshire farmhouse whose owner appears to be McNally.

Let’s hope Katherine finds solace there. 

Her first wedding, to McNally’s art-dealer friend Nigel Pollitzer, playfully known as The Rat, was an uninhibited affair, at which guests included the Marquesses of Blandford and Worcester and Viscount Linley.

Quote of the week

‘I don’t like losing at board games’

Sounds like Christmas was competitive in the household of Olympics legend Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill 

Crumbs! Stick to baking, Mary

Almost nothing seems beyond Mary Berry, whose status as a national treasure was recognised last year when the Queen conferred a damehood on her.

But despite a talent for knocking off a blemishless Victoria sponge, Dame Mary is, it appears, fallible in one respect: reading the property market.

The former Bake Off judge, 85, and her husband, Paul Hunnings, put their home in Buckinghamshire on the market way back in 2017, confident that its Grade-II, 18th-century charms — plus separate two-bedroom cottage, tennis court, duck pond and four acres — would persuade a buyer to stump up the £4 million asking price.

But by 2019 that had been trimmed to £3.45 million — and finally went for £2.4 million to businessman Adrian Patten.

Among other interests, Patten is the director of a restaurant company. He couldn’t have a better recipe for success than Mary, could he?


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