Paul O’Grady’s partner in row with neighbours at late star’s £3m mansion as they go to war over building plans

PAUL O’Grady’s widower has lost his battle with neighbours to turn a security hut at his £3million Kent farmhouse into a house THREE times bigger.

The TV star was initially given the go-ahead for a groundkeeper’s outbuilding, gym and dance studio at his rural estate, which boasts an outdoor swimming pool, fruit orchard and summerhouse.

Andre Portasio became a firm fixture on the showbiz circuit alongside his famous husband

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Andre Portasio became a firm fixture on the showbiz circuit alongside his famous husbandCredit: Getty
But away from the cameras Paul and Andre lived a happy life together

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But away from the cameras Paul and Andre lived a happy life togetherCredit: Instagram

But following his death last year, his Brazilian ballet dancer husband Andre Portasio now wants to turn it into a separate two-bedroom house after the estate was bequeathed to him.

He applied to the local council for a “change of use” of the security lodge which has an office, kitchen and shower, and lies next to the family pet cemetery.

But locals accused him of trying to build a new home “by the back door” and blasted his plans to extend it with a detached garage to boot.

In a letter of objection, a neighbour said: “The present application is in direct contravention of the original planning conditions and in my view amounts to an attempt to gain planning permission for a significant residential development by the back door, and one which will no doubt be sold on separately to the main building.

“Given that the estate is very large, there surely must still be a need for a groundskeeper and gardeners and, indeed, for the workshop that was constructed for them.”

Lily Savage star O’Grady bought the six-bedroom farmhouse for £650,000, in 1999, but it is now believed to be worth £3million.

The sprawling 50-acre estate lies in a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and also comes with four acres of woodland in the so-called Garden of England, where past and present neighbours include comedians Julian Clary and Alan Carr.

Planning permission for the outbuilding was granted four years ago on condition that it “shall only be used for purposes incidental/ancillary to the enjoyment of the dwelling house and not for primary habitable accommodation”.

But Portasio says there is no longer a need for the security hut after For the Love of Dogs presenter O’Grady passed away at the home they shared, in March, 2023, aged 67.

He died due to a sudden cardiac arrhythmia and had twice suffered a heart attack before his fatal collapse.

In a viability appraisal, Portasio’s planning agent said: “Mr Portasio is in the process of re-rationalising the estate and is of the opinion that [the lodge] no longer serves any purpose as the security guard’s office.

“No longer required given the recent passing of Paul O’Grady, celebrity.”

Portasio, who married O’Grady in 2017 after first getting together in 2006, now has three months to appeal against the council’s decision.

Paul had struggled with his health having endured two heart attacks before he died

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Paul had struggled with his health having endured two heart attacks before he diedCredit: Not known, clear with picture desk
Paul was famous for his animal shows on TV and the star had a number of pets on his estate in Kent

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Paul was famous for his animal shows on TV and the star had a number of pets on his estate in KentCredit: Rex
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