Heartbreak for Johnny Depp fans

7:01am Thursday 17th April 2008

By Rebecca Hehir

JOHNNY Depp fans will be heartbroken to learn that the Pirates of the Caribbean star will NOT be moving to a luxury house near Taunton after all.

The County Gazette can exclusively reveal that the property rumoured to be Mr Depp's new residence, Timbercombe House, at Broomfield, is soon to be home to London-based architect John Woolstencroft.

Speculation that the movie star was moving to the Quantocks mansion began last year, as the building work at the property became more impressive.

The £3million house is nearing the end of its major renovation and extension project which includes a swimming pool and a tennis court.

Speaking to the County Gazette from his London office this week, Mr Woolstencroft, 47, said he was surprised by the fascination surrounding Timbercombe House and confirmed that he will be moving there soon with his wife and four young boys.

He said: "I had heard one or two people mention it to me but I was not aware of the full publicity surrounding the property - I'm sorry to disappoint any Johnny Depp fans.

"I'm not a big follower of Johnny Depp but my boys watch the Pirates of the Caribbean films; I'm sure they will be thrilled to hear about the house rumours.

"I've got no idea how the rumour started, but it's very flattering to have a house on a par with a film star.

"I'm a West Country person and I wish to get back to my roots."

The revelation brings an end to speculation that had captured the imagination of the entire region - Timbercombe House is even displayed on Google Maps if you type in Johnny Depp house'.

Matthew McDermott, from nearby Pines Café, said: "I've been hearing the rumours for the last year and a half and I'm bored of hearing about it. But it can only benefit business whether it's true or not.

"It's a talking point. I do think people wander up here thinking let's visit Johnny Depp's house and then pop in for a cup of tea.

"We've never seen him and to my knowledge no-one else has either."

Peter Hall, Chairman of Broomfield Parish Council said: "We certainly haven't discussed Johnny Depp at a parish meeting as we thought it was only a wild rumour, no-one believed it."

"It would have put Broomfield on the map for a week or two if he was living here.

"It would have been nice to think he would have joined in the community too."

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