15 March 2021

Judge overseeing money fight featuring Sir Frederick Barclay and estranged wife

15 March 2021

A judge is overseeing a private divorce court trial featuring a member of one of Britain’s most famous business families and his estranged wife.

Sir Frederick Barclay 86, and Lady Hiroko Barclay, 78, are both expected to give evidence at the virtual trial in the Family Division of the High Court.

Mr Justice Cohen, who is based in London, began hearing arguments from lawyers on Monday. The trial is due to last several days.

The judge said reporters could attend the hearing and Sir Frederick and Lady Hiroko could be named in media reports.

But he said no detail of evidence aired could be revealed.

Sir Frederick and his twin brother Sir David were among the UK’s most high-profile businessmen.

Sir David died, aged 86, in January.

Their interests included the Telegraph Newspaper Group and The Ritz hotel in London. The family also has links to the Channel Islands and Monaco.

They bought The Ritz in 1995 and sold it last year, leading to a family row which resulted in court proceedings.

The brothers, who were knighted in 2000, turned to media ownership in 1992 by buying weekly newspaper The European, which closed in 1998, while they also owned The Scotsman from 1995 to 2005.

They acquired The Daily Telegraph for £665 million more than 15 years ago.

Sir David and Sir Frederick were born into a large family in Hammersmith on October 27 1934.

Their father, also Frederick, was a travelling salesman from Kilmarnock who died when the twins were 13.

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