Friday, 22 October 2021

Beware the rumour mill at Sonning

THE widely reported rumours about George Clooney and his wife Amal Alamuddin buying a house in Sonning reminded Mike Rowbottom of a cautionary tale.

Mike, a journalist from Stoke Row, says: “A few years ago, while working for Central TV, I was tasked with covering the story of the sale of Hambleden village.

“I managed to knock together something and, stuck for a final line as a pay-off, I jokingly mentioned that now David Beckham had been handsomely paid off by, I think, Real Madrid, and with his wife doing very well, they had become among the country’s richest couples and perhaps they might look to buy Hambleden as an investment.

“I broadcast the piece, forgot about it and moved on to the next thing. Three weeks later a report appeared in the Henley Standard suggesting that Beckham might be a potential buyer for Hambleden, according to rumours.

“The saddest irony was that, despite my protestations and the very real possibility that this rumour originated from my report, I was sent to Hambleden to make a story out of it.”

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