Furious locals fly-tip outside Tim Burton's £2.9m Cotswolds home

Furious locals fly-tip outside Tim Burton’s £2.9m Cotswolds home amid row over a wooden fence Hollywood director erected around the property which belonged to his ex-wife Helena Bonham Carter’s great grandfather, wartime PM Herbert Asquith

  • Tim Burton, 62, erected the three-foot fence around his property earlier this year
  • But villagers claim it blocks a path used by the public to access weirs and pools
  • Councillor has written to film director in effort to de-escalate ongoing dispute
  • Burton bought Oxfordshire home in 2008 with his then-partner, Bonham Carter

Furious locals have fly-tipped outside Tim Burton’s £2.9million Cotswolds home amid a row over a wooden fence the Hollywood director erected around his property.

Multi-millionaire filmmaker Burton, 62, moved into the Grade-II-listed 18th-century Mill House with his partner at the time, Helena Bonham Carter, in 2008.

But a row with locals started earlier this year when a three-foot-high wooden fence appeared around the property in Sutton Courtenay, Oxfordshire.

They said it was blocking a path used by the public to access weirs and pools around the River Thames.

The long fence erected around the Grade-II-listed 18th-century property in Sutton Courtenay, Oxfordshire, which is owned by multi-millionaire Hollywood filmmaker Tim Burton

Mill House, pictured, which Burton moved into with his partner at the time, Helena Bonham Carter, in 2008. The house was once owned by her great-grandfather, Herbert Asquith

Villagers claim the fence spoils the view. But it has now been claimed the row has heated up and some angry locals have fly-tipped the home.

However, Sutton Courtenay Paris councillor Richard Webber explained that Burton put up the fence after antisocial behaviour on his land, including littering.

Now councillor Mr Webber has written to the film director in an effort to de-escalate the ongoing dispute.

He said: ‘I have considered carefully how I could help and have come to the following conclusions.

‘Given the potential consequences of legal confrontation, that it might take years to resolve and the only certain beneficiaries would be lawyers and one side only, this route should be avoided.

‘The best chance of a satisfactory outcome for everyone is to be patient, reasonable and polite.

Multi-millionaire film director Burton (above), 62, has directed Beetlejuice, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Edward Scissorhands

‘I have written to the landowner a letter which includes an apology for the behaviour of a small minority of irresponsible people who have left litter and displayed some antisocial behaviour – this is an undeniable fact.

‘Any other approach, is likely to be counterproductive. We need to negotiate a solution for the future involving restoring some limited public access.’

People have been complaining to White Horse District Council since July and the local authority launched an investigation into the legality of the build, which is ongoing.

It is understood the fence is on land which belongs to Mr Burton’s home, but blocks a route the locals have used for years. 

Villagers are said to be mounting a campaign to have the fence removed or ‘the heart of the village will be gone forever’.

It is understood the fence is on land which belongs to Mr Burton’s home, but blocks a route the locals have used for years.

Locals have threatened to tear it down if it’s not removed and said the structure was ‘selfish and heartless’.

Resident Chris Dalton previously posted: ‘I live in the village and believe there are a few things we can do to organise and fight the fence.

There appears to be a gate along the fence erected by Burton around his property in Sutton Courtenay, Oxfordshire. The gate’s precise location or where it leads to is unclear

Neighbours claim, it blocks a path used by the public to access weirs and pools around the River Thames and have previously threatened to tear it down if it is not taken away by officials

‘I have opened a planning dispute against the fence […] This is based on it being a listed building and being next to a footpath. They should have put in planning.

‘If everyone would email [the council] to add to the complaint the would be appreciated. I believe that ultimately money wins planning disputes but this is worth a try.’

Other locals previously vented their anger online too.

Nicola Lewis wrote: ‘I’m now in my 50s but I grew up with everyone having fun down there and took my children there and now take my grandchildren.

‘It should not be taken from the public – Helena and Tim have more than enough space, don’t take ours.’

It is not the first time Mr Burton has angered his neighbours with a fence on his land. In 2018, he put up a 7ft-tall, 130 foot-long wooden structure (pictured) which walkers said cuts out the light and narrows the public footpath next to the property 

Permission was sought for the much-taller fence retrospectively and was granted despite opposition

Luke Stroud added: ‘My family have been in the village for four generations and all used the Weir pools.

‘If it comes to it I’ll remove the fence myself.’

The house was once owned by her great-grandfather, Herbert Asquith, the prime minister who took Britain into the First World War.

On its lawns Asquith used to entertain Winston Churchill, Lloyd George and the Aga Khan. Asquith, known as ‘The Sledgehammer’, found escape from weighty pre-war politics, and it was where he mourned the death on the Somme of his son, Raymond.

Mr Burton first bought the property five years after meeting actress Helena Bonham Carter, with whom he has two children. The pair split in 2014 after 13 years together

Prime Minister from 1908 to 1916 and the leader of the last Liberal government, he bought the 18th-century Mill House along with neighbouring Wharf Mill, where he lived, in 1912.

Asquith loved the area – his biographer Roy Jenkins said it played a ‘great part’ in his life – so much so that he chose to die there, and asked to be buried in the churchyard rather than Westminster Abbey. His widow sold the property in 1932.

Jane Stevens, who served as lady-in-waiting to the late Princess Margaret and was also a close friend, was its owner for 30 years before it was sold to Burton.

More recently, Johnny Depp is believed to have sought solace there with his friends Bonham Carter and Burton following the bitter fallout from his divorce from Amber Heard.

Bonham Carter and Burton split in 2014 after 13 years together but they remain friends and both spend time at the house with their children Billy and Nell.

This is not the first time Burton has been embroiled in a planning row, after he was previously warned he needed to protect trees during renovations to his £11million Edwardian mansion in Hampstead Heath.

Tim Burton bought the Edwardian home (pictured) in north London’s exclusive enclave, Hampstead Heath, from the actor Tom Conti in November 2018 for £11million 

Designed in 1903 by mathematician and educationist William Garnett, the house is thought to have been inspired by Lewis Carroll’s nonsense poem Jabberwocky

Camden council earlier asked him to put in measures to protect several large trees that overhang from his neighbour’s property. 

His planning agent said there was a ‘potential zone of interaction between operatives and branches’ from a nearby beech tree.

In planning documents, Daniel Pope, Camden Council chief planning officer, previously said: ‘Prior to the commencement of any works on site, details demonstrating how trees to be retained shall be protected during construction work shall be submitted to and approved by the local planning authority in writing. 

‘All trees on the site, or parts of trees growing from adjoining sites, unless shown on the permitted drawings as being removed, shall be retained and protected from damage.’

Designed in 1903 by mathematician and educationist William Garnett, the house was supposedly inspired by Lewis Carroll’s nonsense poem Jabberwocky.

Before purchasing the property, Burton and Bonham Carter lived in adjoining properties in Hampstead before their separation in 2014.

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