EU officially kills plan to rent posh London home for UK ambassador

EU officially kills plan to rent posh London home for UK ambassador
Опубликовано: Wednesday, 15 February 2023 14:33

The EU’s diplomatic wing backs down amid criticism over the cost of renting a mansion among the stars.


The EU’s U.K. ambassador won’t be moving to London’s Millionaires’ Row after all.

Facing criticism over the costs of renting a mansion among the stars, the bloc’s diplomatic wing, the European External Action Service (EEAS), has formally withdrawn its plan to rent a posh property in London’s affluent Chelsea neighborhood, according to a letter seen by POLITICO.

“The EEAS has decided not to further pursue the proposed project for the lease of a Residence for the Head of the Delegation to the United Kingdom in London,” the EEAS wrote to the budget committees of the European Parliament and Council of the EU, which represents EU countries.

“The Building File is hereby withdrawn,” it added.

The retraction came after numerous EU lawmakers and national capitals balked at pricey rent, which ran at over €1 million a year.

The plan had been to rent a place for the EU’s U.K. ambassador, Pedro Serrano de Haro, on Upper Cheyne Row — a street sometimes dubbed “Millionares’ Row” for its famous residents over the years, including actress Elizabeth Taylor, Dracula author Bram Stoker and Rolling Stone Mick Jagger.

But EU countries essentially killed the scheme earlier this month. Facing defeat, EEAS has now decided to go back to the drawing board.

The residence is well-equipped to sit among its wealthy neighbors, featuring over 600 square meters, a roof terrace and two patios.

“It seems golden toilets are the only thing missing in this regal residence where the ambassador could live like a Spanish king,” one EU critical diplomat said earlier this month.

The EEAS will now have to scramble to find Serrano de Haro a new home. The lease on his current place in Whistler Square cannot be renewed.

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