As a teetotal Marxist said to eat cold baked beans directly out of a tin for supper, Jeremy Corbyn is not known as a party animal.
Yet his son Ben has, I hear, developed a close friendship with one of London’s most notoriously louche revellers.
His pal is ‘Lord’ Edward Davenport, the convicted fraudster famed for organising opulent sex parties from his Portland Place mansion in Marylebone in the late 1980s.
Corbyn, 32, who works as a football coach, declines to comment, but ‘Fast Eddie’, as he’s known, confirms they are friends.
‘Ben is a very, very lovely guy, and I know him very well,’ Davenport tells me. He denies they have any shared business interests. ‘I saw him when I was last in London, but he doesn’t work for me in any capacity,’ says Davenport, who spends much of the year in Thailand.
Ben Corbyn, pictured right along with his brother Thomas has developed a close friendship with ‘Fast Eddie’ Davenport
A self-styled ‘Lord’, Davenport, 56, began his career in the 1980s, founding the infamous Gatecrasher Balls for privately educated teenagers when he was 20
Former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, pictured, reportedly eats cold baked beans directly out of a tin for supper
A self-styled ‘Lord’, Davenport, 56, began his career in the 1980s, founding the infamous Gatecrasher Balls for privately educated teenagers when he was 20.
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His fall from grace began in 2001 when the government of Sierra Leone accused him of tricking it into selling its high commission in Portland Place, at the time worth £5 million, for £50,000. The property changed hands while the country was gripped by civil war. It became the backdrop for his infamous parties and was used in Oscar-winning film The King’s Speech.
Davenport was given an eight-year jail sentence in 2011 after his finance firm was found to have conned clients out of £4.5 million. But he was released from prison after three years as an ‘act of mercy’ when he persuaded judges he was seriously ill with kidney problems.
A friend of Corbyn tells me: ‘Ben has never had any business involvement with Mr Davenport.’
Suki digs for chart victory
Suki Waterhouse’s single Brutally may have failed to make the top 200 tracks in the UK’s download charts, but the model is determined to show that her musical career is not dead and buried.
Plastic surgeon’s daughter Suki, 30, is seen holding a shovel at a burial plot in the video for her forthcoming song Nostalgia. She later lies down in the grave, surrounded by flowers.
Plastic surgeon’s daughter Suki, 30, is seen holding a shovel at a burial plot in the video for her forthcoming song Nostalgia. She later lies down in the grave, surrounded by flowers
Suki, whose boyfriend is Hollywood heart-throb Robert Pattinson, says the song is ‘about the romance of missing the idea of something, someone’.
Advised by his father to stick to his first wife, Victoria, through ‘thick and thin’, he memorably responded that Victoria was ‘thin — and certainly thick’.
Earl Spencer now has the chance to test his jokes on chums — when he addresses a reunion dinner at Eton College this Friday. It’s being held for those who left 40 years ago. These included Darius Guppy, convicted in the 1990s of fraud, and Boris Johnson. The former PM spoke at the 30-year reunion dinner. Alluding to aeronautical noise heard over Eton, he remarked: ‘That’s what happens when you put a D-Blocker in charge’ — a reference to David Cameron, who was two years his junior.
Bea beats the cold with a £695 coat
Sarah, Duchess of York, turns 63 next week and she seems to have one birthday present in the bag already.
Her daughter Princess Beatrice, 34, clutched a colourfully wrapped gift as she was seen out and about for the first time since the period of royal mourning for the Queen ended.
Bea — who has a one-year-old daughter, Sienna, with her property developer husband, Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi — replaced the black she’s been wearing since her grandmother’s death with a £695 tan wool felt coat designed by Ulla Johnson
Bea — who has a one-year-old daughter, Sienna, with her property developer husband, Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi — replaced the black she’s been wearing since her grandmother’s death with a £695 tan wool felt coat designed by Ulla Johnson.
Pop’s Ellie doesn’t split the critics
Royal favourite Ellie Goulding, who won the President’s Award for her contributions to music and song-writing at the BMI London Awards, could have taken home the prize for most striking outfit.
The pop singer, 35, who’s married to Old Etonian art dealer Caspar Jopling, wore a black polo neck dress with a huge split for the bash at the Savoy Hotel. She topped it off with a pair of towering heels.
Ellie Goulding, pictured, who’s married to Old Etonian art dealer Caspar Jopling, wore a black polo neck dress with a huge split for the bash at the Savoy Hotel. She topped it off with a pair of towering heels
That’s no way to treat The Lady! I hear the stateliest and oldest women’s magazine in Britain is on the hunt for a new editor after parting ways with Maxine Frith, who’s been at the helm since 2019. The following year, The Lady’s owner, Ben Budworth — who lives at Bylaugh Hall in Norfolk — was criticised after putting himself on furlough during the pandemic, trousering nearly £2,500 a month of taxpayers’ money. He previously appalled his redoutable mother, Julia, by selling the splendid Covent Garden HQ and relocating The Lady to Boreham Wood, in Hertfordshire, earning himself £12.4 million.
King will stick to his guns, says TV designer
When Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen designed floors for Buckingham Palace, Prince Philip made it very clear he ‘hated’ them.
And the Changing Rooms star believes that King Charles won’t hold back from speaking his mind.
‘People who know him very well say he won’t stop airing his views, not if he’s got a real strength of opinion,’ Llewelyn-Bowen, 57, tells me at the launch party for his new book — More, More, More.
‘This is someone who President Trump refused to be left in a room with, because he knew Prince Charles would tell him off. He knew he’d do that whole finger-wagging thing about Trump’s eco-credentials.’