EDEN CONFIDENTIAL: Rolling Stones star Bill Wyman’s Sticky Fingers eaterie comes unstuck
A generation of Rolling Stones fans have found culinary satisfaction at Bill Wyman’s Sticky Fingers, but the bassist is shutting down his legendary restaurant after 32 years, I can reveal.
‘Bill’s devastated that it’s had to close, but the Covid-19 pandemic made it impossible to keep going,’ one of his friends tells me.
‘It combined his passions for comfort food and music, and it always meant a lot to him, right up until the end.’
Sticky Fingers, which he named after the 1971 Stones album, was based on Wyman’s favourite ‘messy’ American-style cuisine including burgers and fries, sticky ribs and fajitas.
Controversy: Wyman and Mandy Smith at his restaurant in 1989. Sticky Fingers, which Wyman named after the 1971 Stones album, was based on his favourite ‘messy’ American-style cuisine
Wyman’s Sticky Fingers restaurant at Phillimore Gardens in London. The restaurant was a popular destination not only for foodies but also rock ’n’ roll fans
The musician, who left the Stones in 1993, wanted the Kensington dining room to be ‘a haven of good times and good food’.
But its grand opening was eclipsed when Wyman, then aged 52, attended the launch with his 18-year-old fiancee, Mandy Smith. He had started courting her when she was just 13 and, according to her, began a sexual relationship the following year.
He was later investigated by Scotland Yard’s Serious Crimes Squad, but no charges were brought.
A lot had changed by the venue’s 28th anniversary, which Bill marked by hosting a private party there with his third wife, Californian model Suzanne Accosta, 50, and their daughters Jessica, 25, and Matilda Mae, 23.
Stella and Mary McCartney pictured at Sticky Fingers restaurant in London to celebrate its third birthday in May 1992
Ron and Jo Wood at the opening of Wyman’s Sticky Fingers restaurant in Kensington, London
The restaurant was a popular destination not only for foodies but also rock ’n’ roll fans, as Bill filled the walls with more than 100 items from the Bill Wyman Archive.
They included a selection of his own instruments such as his fretless bass guitar, which he constructed himself in 1961 and used at his first ever meeting with his future bandmates, Sir Mick Jagger and Keith Richards.
The venue has now been completely stripped of all items, while a sign on the front door reads: ‘We are sorry for any inconvenience that this may cause and we thank you for your continued support throughout the years.’
Bamford Jr makes time for Snoopy
JCB billionaire Lord Bamford’s son, George, has designed watches with luxury brands Rolex and Bulgari, but he actually went back in time for his new collection.
The Bamford London founder harked back to his childhood for inspiration for his limited-edition Snoopy design, which launches today at £1,366.
‘I’m a lifelong fan,’ says Bamford, 40, who once attended a party with his wife, Leonora, wearing a Snoopy themed suit.
‘I love the timelessness and playfulness of Snoopy. He’s a cool character and this new watch is so cool it glows in the dark.’
‘I’m a lifelong fan,’ says Bamford, 40, who once attended a party with his wife, Leonora, wearing a Snoopy themed suit (left). Pictured right: the limited-edition Snoopy design, which launches today at £1,366
Stanley Johnson seems to be pulling out all the stops to win permission to release beavers on his country estate.
I hear Boris Johnson’s father invited Natural England’s chairman, Tony Juniper, to his farm in Exmoor, Somerset, this week. It can be difficult to obtain permission to release the rodents as they may cause environmental damage and Juniper’s in charge of the body that hands out the licences.
Stanley insists that Juniper, who lives in Cambridge, was ‘not on official business’, telling me: ‘He just dropped by. He was in the area for Natural England purposes, so dropped round to mine. Of course, I showed him around my estate and all the environmental work I have been doing.’
Air we go: TV’s Donna joins in with a jumbo-ree!
Donna Air seen at the CoExistence exhibtion private viewing in Mayfair, London, this month
Donna Air declared she wasn’t ‘bothered’ about looking for a boyfriend after the end of long-term relationships with the Duchess of Cambridge’s brother, James Middleton, and wildlife park heir Damian Aspinall.
‘Men take a lot of looking after,’ the actress explained. Now, however, Donna, 41, seems to have had a change of heart and would consider using dating apps.
‘I’m very openminded to using them,’ she tells me at the launch of illustrator George Butler’s CoExistence exhibition at Mayfair’s Sladmore Contemporary.
‘The way people date has changed.’ The show’s in aid of the Elephant Family, founded by the Duchess of Cornwall’s late brother, Mark Shand. As part of the charity drive, a ‘herd’ of 100 elephant sculptures is on show in London’s Royal Parks.
One of them has been named after Victoria & Albert Museum chairman Nicholas Coleridge. He tells me: ‘I suppose some people might not like the idea of being compared to a large elephant, but I consider it an honour.’
As part of the charity drive, a ‘herd’ of 100 elephant sculptures (pictured above) is on show in London’s Royal Parks
One of them has been named after Victoria & Albert Museum chairman Nicholas Coleridge
He’s a property wizard: Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe has sold a flat for almost £1.1 million — to his parents. The three-bedroom apartment is in Melbourne, Australia, and was used by the 31-year-old actor while he was filming Down Under.
Official records show it’s been sold to a corporate entity based in Britain and directed by his literary agent father, Alan Radcliffe, and casting agent mother Marcia Gresham.
Their lockdown video calls inspired the amusing BBC drama Staged, but Michael Sheen and David Tennant finally met face to face on Wednesday evening.
Tennant and his wife, Georgia, watched Sheen perform the first night of Under Milk Wood at the National Theatre, before they joined the Welshman and his girlfriend, Anna Lundberg, at The Ivy for dinner.
It’s not known what Sheen ordered: he said he’d been so nervous about acting on stage that all he had been able to stomach recently was chicken salad and cups of tea.
Will Mossie show for Joe’s swan song?
Kate Moss feels just as much at home in front of a microphone as she does on the catwalk, says pianist Joe Thompson, who tickles the ivories for the final time tonight at The Ivy Club.
Thompson — the house pianist since the West End venue opened 13 years ago — tells me: ‘Kate would always sit on the piano stool. She would be like, “Hello Darling, shall we have a sing-song?” and she’d sit there with her arm around me.’
Joe plans to concentrate on tutoring, but would come out of retirement for the Windsors: ‘I’ve played on a few occasions for the Royal Family so I wouldn’t say no to them.’
Kate Moss pictured singing at Babyshambles concert in Florence, Italy, in October 2006
Roll up for royal circus training!
Who says royal life is a circus? Prince Charles’s Scottish stately home, Dumfries House, is offering a course in circus skills to help improve teachers’ resilience as well as strengthen team-working.
The Prince’s Foundation says: ‘The sessions will provide participants with the opportunity to try out a number of activities including indoor climbing, circus skills, mindfulness, archery, fire lighting and a timed assault course.’ I wonder who’ll be the human cannonball?
Strictly host Claudia Winkleman would be a nobody without her long fringe, she claims. ‘It’s the only reason why I have work — I’m sure of it,’ says Winkleman, who co-presents the hit show with former model Tess Daly.
‘Because when I was starting out . . . even now, if you can’t think of . . . “Who’s that orange girl? What’s her name? You know, she stands next to beautiful Tess? The little…the fringe girl? Yeah, let’s have her”.’
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