HOLLYWOOD star Alan Cumming spent much of last year wrangling with the electoral authorities over whether his purchase of a flat in Edinburgh would make him eligible to vote in September's independence referendum.

Now the Scots actor has bought a new home, spending almost £3 million on a four-storey New York townhouse.

The 48-year-old X-Men star's house has seven bedrooms, four bathrooms, a "forest-like garden", balcony and a roof deck, according to reports. There is also a French country chef-style kitchen with 19th-century flooring. It has been described as "partially renovated" and approval has been granted for two more storeys.

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He shares the trendy neighbourhood with Friends actor David Schwimmer. The estate agents describe it as a "country house in the city on nicest East Village block. Exceptionally charming. Only one sale of property in 70 years."

Cumming's agent has described his Edinburgh home as his main residence in Scotland, but under electoral rules he would have to stay for six months in a year to qualify to vote.