Rod Stewart is doing his own form of public service by filling in potholes near his Essex estate.
The 77-year-old Hard Road singer posted videos of himself on Instagram shovelling gravel near his home in Harlow, Essex, saying: “I’m repairing the street near where I live because no one can be bothered to do it.”
They say the first rut is the deepest, and Stewart bemoaned the damage poor road maintenance could cause to his Ferrari.
“People are bashing their cars up,” he said. “The other day, there was an ambulance with a burst tyre. My Ferrari can’t go through here at all.”
“We are filling in the holes ourselves while millions and millions of pounds are being spent on the M11,” he added.
Stewart wore a tracksuit and hi-vis tabard to do the shovelling, after he was mocked on Instagram for wearing all-white to clean out his garage during the first lockdown.
Should Harlow experience flooding, Stewart will no doubt emerge with sandbags and his gladrags.
His intervention came in the week that his wife, Penny Lancaster, made her first arrest as a special constable with the City of London police. She applied to join the police as a volunteer officer after taking part in reality TV programme Famous and Fighting Crime where she joined officers on the beat.
Last year, Stewart told the Guardian he wasn’t concerned for his wife as she patrolled the streets. “She wants to look after the city she loves, which is London. Go girl! She’s 6ft 2in, so I don’t have to worry about her,” he said.
It is not the first time Stewart has locked horns with his local council. In 2020, the conservation department of Epping Forest district council objected to his plans to upgrade the windows in his Grade II-listed, 10-bedroom mansion, which he bought for £4.65m in 2013.
Despite his reputation as one of the world’s most enduring rockers, Stewart has increasingly used social media to reveal his domestic side, under the tagline: “Wake up Maggie I’ve got something to Instagram.”
In November, he posted a video of his family washing up after dinner while he danced around the kitchen with a yellow dishcloth on his head.