Tom Cruise is planning to live in the former home of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard.
The actor is a devoted follower of the controversial religious movement, and is reportedly moving to the $16 million mansion in East Grinstead, England where Hubbard once resided.
Cruise put his own home in the English town up for sale last year, but is apparently not planning to abandon the area, which is Scientology’s British base. Instead, the star is helping the movement’s leader David Miscavige renovate the luxury Saint Hill Manor estate and use it as a home when he is in the U.K.
“Tom is relocating to England and uses the Scientology manor as his base,” a source tells Britain’s Daily Mail newspaper. “It’s the highest recognition to live where L.Ron Hubbard did, and Miscavige clearly believes giving Tom this access will keep his faith in the Church for decades to come.”
According to the insider, the move has reaffirmed the Top Gun star’s commitment to his faith and he hopes to promote it in Europe. Some of the continent’s governments, such as Germany and France do not recognise Scientology as a religion.
“It’s worked a charm because Tom’s more dedicated to Scientology than ever before,” the source said. “He’s investing a lot of his own money back into the UK Church and secretly the talk is how they want to be as influential as the Royal family. It might sound like a deluded dream but with bottomless cash and ongoing renovations they believe that, in time, Saint Hill Manor will overshadow Buckingham Palace.”
Editors at the publication report that the Cruise funded building work will include the creation of a spa and gymnasium as well as a high-end restaurant.
The planned renovations, some of which were completed last year caused Scientology leaders to request officials at a local rugby club to help provide parking for the vehicles involved.
In return, the movement donated $10,000 to the sports organisation.
The mansion is also near to the home of Cruise’s adopted daughter with former wife Nicole Kidman, Bella, 23, who lives 20 miles away in Croydon, England.
She and her father have reportedly become close enough for the star to think of her as a potential leader within the Scientology movement.
“Tom’s made a real effort with her lately and he clearly believes having a strong woman like Bella as a senior figure of the Church will help recruitment and its image as a whole,” the source adds.
As well as allowing the Hollywood superstar to be close to his daughter, spending time in the U.K. will also allow him to be close to his adopted son Conor, 21, who also lives in Croydon. (WENN)