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Saturday, 23 May, 1998, 21:26 GMT 22:26 UK
Bob Hope birthplace for sale
Bob Hope
The London birthplace of Bob Hope, which has no indoor bathroom, is on the market at 86,000
A piece of entertainment history has gone on the market - the London house where comedian Bob Hope was born.

The world famous comic, who was knighted earlier this month, was born in a humble terraced house in Craigton Road, Eltham, south London in 1903.

The three-bedroom house has changed little since then.

There is no bathroom and the only toilet is outside, but local estate agents Harrison Ingram are asking 86,000 for the property.

Character home

The property details say: "Your chance to buy a character home which boasts a former resident of character - and what a character!

"The birthplace of Bob Hope - a three-bedroom Corbett house is for sale but full modernisation is required - of the house, that is!"

Agent Paul Harrison said: "We put it on the market two weeks ago and quite a few people have come to view it.

Bob Hope
Bob Hope received a knighthood earlier this month
"We have had an offer but it is lower than the asking price and it has not been accepted."

Mr Harrison added: "There has been a lot of media interest - both in this country and in America, but I don't really think anybody would buy the house specifically because Bob Hope was born there.

"Houses around the area normally go for about 95,000 but this needs a lot of modernisation.

"The offer we have had has come from a local man who wants it as a family home."

There is no evidence in the house of its famous former resident, although the deeds do boast the names of the comic's parents and photographs exist of the young Bob outside the home.

Left London

Bob Hope, the son of a stonemason and charwoman, was christened Leslie Townes Hope and left London for America when he was just four years old.

But the south Londoner who rose from an immigrant shoeshine boy to become an American institution never forgot his humble roots.

Bob Hope, Bing Crosby and Dorothy Lamour in the Road to Singapore
Bob Hope, Bing Crosby and Dorothy Lamour in the Road to Singapore
In 1984, when in Britain to open the Bob Hope Theatre in Eltham, he returned to his former home and posed for pictures with owners Jack and Florence Ching.

The couple - Mr Ching died in 1988 and his widow died just a few months ago - lived in the house for more than 60 years.

Mr Hope, now 94, and suffering from failing eyesight and hearing, was awarded an honorary knighthood at the British Embassy in Washington on May 17.

He became a radio star before making more than 50 films and entertaining American and British troops during several wars.

See also:

18 May 98 | Americas
Knighthood for Bob Hope
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