Insurance entrepreneur Neil Utley 52, and his wife Narmali, 46, have agreed a cash deal for the Beckham’s stunning seven-bed property in Hertfordshire.
One of Britain’s most successful tycoons has bought David and Victoria Beckham’s country mansion for £11.3million.
Millionaire Neil Utley, 52, and his wife Narmali, 46, agreed a cash deal for the stunning property dubbed ‘Beckingham Palace’ and its sprawling 17-acre super-estate.
The thrilled couple, who married in August 2010, plan to make very few changes to the unique, seven-bed home in Hertfordshire. It comes with a second property – nicknamed mini-Beckingham Palace in the grounds. There is a woodland chapel, fake ancient ruins forming a playground, gardens including a Capability Brown-style maze, barbecue area and professionally tended football pitch. The house, a former children’s home, boasts a recording studio, an indoor swimming pool, a snooker room and a gym.
The iconic property was bought by David and Victoria in 1999 for £2.5 million. It is reported the property is now worth over £12 Million.
Entrepreneur Mr Utley was listed at number 462 in the 2012 Sunday Times Rich List. He made his fortune in insurance but has a number of other business interests in the UK. In 2006 he pocketed £13million after helping sell Equity Insurance Group, then Britain’s fifth-largest motor insurer, for a £140million profit 18 months after he and his partners privatised it.
Last November he cashed in to the tune of £135million after Hastings Insurance was sold to Goldman Sachs. He was the ¬majority shareholder in Hastings and had helped transform it from a failing business. Mr Utley also has an eye for a property deal. In August 2012 he rescued an abandoned house covered in ivy in Chelmsford, Essex. After cleaning it up he sold the property for £350,000 – three times its previous value.
The Beckhams had been trying to sell for nearly four years after finding themselves spending very little time there following their move to the US in 2007 but finding a buyer took time because they were determined not to sell to a developer, who they feared would cash in on their fame and divide the house up into luxury apartments. The deal was agreed on the understanding that the Utleys must keep the house as a private family home. The family have now moved into a four-storey £40million town house in upper-crust Kensington, West London. Mr Utley did not wish to comment.