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David Cameron wants to build £50,000 swimming pool but council officials say it may be too deep

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david cameron wants to build 50000 swimming pool but council officials say it may be too deep
Former Prime Minister David Cameron (seen in Cornwall recently) is trying to build a £50,000 swimming pool in the garden of his country home but his plans could be scuppered after council officials said it may be too deep

Former Prime Minister David Cameron (seen in Cornwall recently) is trying to build a £50,000 swimming pool in the garden of his country home but his plans could be scuppered after council officials said it may be too deep

Former Prime Minister David Cameron is trying to build a £50,000 swimming pool in the garden of his country home but his plans could be scuppered after council officials said it may be too deep, MailOnline can reveal.

A planning application was submitted to West Oxfordshire District Council in early August for the pool at Mr Cameron’s £1.5 million home in the Cotswolds, which he shares with wife Samantha and their three children.

Mr Cameron’s ambitions to take to the water in his own backyard have suffered a setback after council officials demanded further investigations be carried out on the environmental impact of the proposed pool.

At 14 metres long and four metres wide, the pool has a sloping floor, giving it a depth of 1.5 metres at its shallowest falling to 2 metres at its deepest. 

The plans propose eight underwater lights and stylish dark tiles around the pool, which will be dug in an extended part of the garden currently described as ‘meadow grass’.

Local planning officials have asked the former premier for a detailed report on the pool’s impact on groundwater on his property and how it will be drained when it needs to be cleaned.

They have also demanded more details on how the pool will be heated and for ‘technical noise data’ for any pump or plant room that maybe used over fears it might cause a racket in the sleepy Cotswolds village of Dean.

A planning application was submitted to West Oxfordshire District Council in early August for the pool at Mr Cameron’s £1.5 million home in the Cotswolds, which he shares with his wife Samantha and their three children (above)

A planning application was submitted to West Oxfordshire District Council in early August for the pool at Mr Cameron’s £1.5 million home in the Cotswolds, which he shares with his wife Samantha and their three children (above)

Mr Cameron’s ambitions to take to the water in his own backyard have suffered a setback after council officials demanded further investigations be carried out on the environmental impact of the proposed pool (above)

Mr Cameron’s ambitions to take to the water in his own backyard have suffered a setback after council officials demanded further investigations be carried out on the environmental impact of the proposed pool (above)

Local planning officials have asked the former premier for a detailed report on the pool’s impact on groundwater on his property and how it will be drained when it needs to be cleaned

Local planning officials have asked the former premier for a detailed report on the pool’s impact on groundwater on his property and how it will be drained when it needs to be cleaned

David and Samantha Cameron bought their house in 2001 when he became MP for Witney.

Other famous residents who live in the area include footballer David Beckham, TV presenters Jeremy Clarkson and Amanda Holden, and Blur bassist Alex James.

The planning application refers to Mr Cameron as ‘Was Witney’s MP.’ It does not contain details of the cost but the average price for building a pool in the Cotswolds is in the region of £50,000 but can be more depending on the style.

Mr Cameron’s pool is being built by Blue Water Pools which is based in Oxfordshire and run by businessmen Michael Jackson and Barry Cavey.

The company refused to comment on details of the former premier’s pool.

Since leaving Number 10 in 2016, Mr Cameron, 53, has been on a health kick after piling on the pounds during his time in office. He spent several months on a no bread diet and has been working out to ensure the flab does not return.

With uncertainty continuing over travelling and social distancing due to the coronavirus pandemic, Mr Cameron is just one of a number of wealthy residents of the Cotswolds who have resorted to building their own pool in the drive to stay fit.

Swimming pool builders in the Cotswolds told MailOnline that they have never been busier.

A spokeswoman for Rio Pools said: ‘We’re fully booked up until next April. This is a bit of a boom time for the pool building industry.

At 14 metres long and four metres wide, the pool has a sloping floor, giving it a depth of 1.5 metres at its shallowest falling to 2 metres at its deepest

At 14 metres long and four metres wide, the pool has a sloping floor, giving it a depth of 1.5 metres at its shallowest falling to 2 metres at its deepest

The planning application refers to Mr Cameron as ‘Was Witney’s MP.’ It does not contain details of the cost but the average price for building a pool in the Cotswolds is in the region of £50,000 but can be more depending on the style

The planning application refers to Mr Cameron as ‘Was Witney’s MP.’ It does not contain details of the cost but the average price for building a pool in the Cotswolds is in the region of £50,000 but can be more depending on the style

The plans propose eight underwater lights and stylish dark tiles around the pool, which will be dug in an extended part of the garden currently described as 'meadow grass'. Pictured: Mr Cameron and daughter Nancy building a chicken coop at their home

The plans propose eight underwater lights and stylish dark tiles around the pool, which will be dug in an extended part of the garden currently described as ‘meadow grass’. Pictured: Mr Cameron and daughter Nancy building a chicken coop at their home

In 2017, Mr Cameron installed a £25,000 shepherd’s hut in his garden so he could write his memoir, but it did not require any planning permission

In 2017, Mr Cameron installed a £25,000 shepherd’s hut in his garden so he could write his memoir, but it did not require any planning permission

‘The average cost of a pool is around £50,000 to £60,000 but it can be a lot more depending on its look and the type of water you want. Basically, if you’ve got the money, you can spend as much as you want on a pool.’

In 2017, Mr Cameron installed a £25,000 shepherd’s hut in his garden so he could write his memoir, but it did not require any planning permission.

He has also previously been given the go-ahead to raise the height of an existing stone boundary wall and block up an existing gate at his home.

Mr Cameron will be hoping for a similarly favourable outcome once the council digests the new reports it has asked for. It is likely to make a decision on his new pool at the end of this month.

So far, there have been been no objections from Mr Cameron’s immediate neighbours and  the former prime minister declined to comment. 

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RICHARD LITTLEJOHN: I have sympathy for Jeremy Corbyn

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richard littlejohn i have sympathy for jeremy corbyn

Are you sitting comfortably? Then I’ll begin. You may like to pour yourself a stiff drink. This is going to come as a shock.

For the first time in my life, I have some sympathy for Jeremy Corbyn.

There’s a sentence you never thought you’d read in this column. To be honest, it’s a sentence I never thought I’d write.

Richard Littlejohn claims he has sympathy for Jeremy Corbyn over his dinner party blunder

Richard Littlejohn claims he has sympathy for Jeremy Corbyn over his dinner party blunder

Jeremy Corbyn, pictured right, was accused of breaching lockdown rules by attending this dinner party with eight other people

Jeremy Corbyn, pictured right, was accused of breaching lockdown rules by attending this dinner party with eight other people

Prime Minister Boris Johnson, pictured at PMQs yesterday, was himself confused over the rules he had introduced

Prime Minister Boris Johnson, pictured at PMQs yesterday, was himself confused over the rules he had introduced 

The former Labour leader faces a fine of £200 after being photographed at a dinner party for nine — a clear breach of the Government’s Rule of Six.

Under anti-Covid laws, gatherings of more than six people in a private home are illegal, unless they all live in the same house.

The photo was taken at a friend’s home, so he’s bang to rights. Put your cycle clips on, chummy, you’re bleedin’ nicked.

Corbyn is one of eight diners sitting around a table laid for nine. Presumably, the picture was taken by the other guest, although how it ended up in the papers remains a mystery.

As well as Corbyn and his wife, the people at the party in Islington are described as Left-wing activists, film-makers and artists, so you can’t imagine any of them grassing him up to the hated tabloid Press.

But you never can be sure. Maybe one of them is an MI5 agent. It can’t be a coincidence that the dinner party sting happened on the same day Corbyn’s brother Piers was fined £10,000 for organising an anti-mask rally in Trafalgar Square.

No doubt a full-scale, Momentum-led mole hunt is under way

   

More from Richard Littlejohn for the Daily Mail…

Just because you’re paranoid, it doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you.

Still, once I stopped laughing I began to consider the sinister implications of this story. OK, so a quinoa casserole in the company of a crowd of sour-faced Toytown Trots isn’t exactly my idea of a night out, but I don’t begrudge Corbyn and his comrades their Fairtrade fun.

The idea that they can be fined a collective £1,800 for the privilege is scandalous. They are all consenting adults and know the risks from coronavirus. No government should ever be able to dictate who you can entertain in your own home.

What disappoints me is that Corbyn has meekly accepted his punishment. ‘I recently had a dinner at a friend’s house where the number of guests eventually exceeded five,’ he said. ‘I understand that remaining at the dinner was a breach of the Rule of Six. I apologise for my mistake.’

Oh, for goodness’ sake.

Is he really trying to convince us that this was all an unfortunate misunderstanding? When he saw the kitchen table was laid for nine, how many guests did he think would be sitting down to eat?

Was he supposed to leg it once he’d done a quick head count?

Maybe he was genuinely confused about how to interpret the new law. Would they have been in breach of the Rule of Six if three of the guests had eaten their meals at a picnic table just outside the back door? Frankly, who knows? The regulations vary from country to country, from region to region, from town to town, and in some areas from street to street.

For instance, in most of the North-West, the Rule of Six applies. You can meet friends in a pub or restaurant, but not in your own home or garden.

You can have 15 people at a wedding and 30 at a funeral — except in Bolton, where the limit is just six and pubs and restaurants are closed.

In the Wirral, the Rule of Six applies to everyone. But over the border in North Wales, children under 11 are exempt and you can have 30 people at a wedding, provided they wear masks.

You can drive from the Wirral to North Wales, but not from North Wales to the Wirral. If you want to carry on drinking after the 10pm curfew, you could always take a private jet to Northern Ireland, where the pubs don’t close until 11pm. With luck, you’ll make it in time for last orders.

In the North-East and Liverpool, six people can play organised sport indoors, but only if they all come from the same household. How’s that going to work then?

‘Howay, Grandma, you’ll have to gan in goal again, pet lamb.’

Needless to say, in Scotland the rules are different again. Only non-contact sport is permitted indoors. So, presumably, snooker is OK, but not boxing. Mind you, in Glasgow, snooker can be a contact sport, too, especially after a few pints of heavy.

Wee Burney won’t let you entertain friends in your own home, and only two households are allowed to meet outside. In Scotland, the Rule of Six exemption applies to children under 12, not 11.

Why? Your guess is as good as mine. Confused? You’re supposed to be. Not even Boris Johnson appears to a have clue about what’s going on locally, as he demonstrated this week. And by the time you read this, the rules may well have changed again, as more areas are plunged into local lockdown.

Watching the 24-hour news channels is like following the football score updates on Soccer Saturday, as the names of towns and cities added to the list by scaremongering Health Secretary Matt Hancock scroll across the bottom of the screen.

Yesterday it was the turn of Liverpool, Middlesbrough, Hartlepool and Warrington.

Maybe Hancock fancies himself as Covid’s answer to Sky’s Jeff Stelling. ‘There’s been another confirmed case of coronavirus on Merseyside. Let’s go live to our Covid Marshal on the spot . . .’

The absurd Hancock is now warning that ‘hundreds of thousands’ will die unless we follow the rules to the letter. But apart from a handful of Tory backbenchers, no politician is speaking out against this madness.

This could have been Corbyn’s moment in the sun. I’d have been far more impressed if he’d declared he would rather go to jail than pay any fine. That’s what the old firebrand Corbyn would have done. He could have become Britain’s first Covid Lockdown Martyr.

The Glasto crowd would chant: ‘Free Jer-em-y Corbyn.’

And as he was dragged off to the Scrubs, he could have denounced the Tory tyranny and vowed to carry on defying the Rule of Six, insisting that in a free country:

Dinner parties are for the many, not the few . . .

You dirty old man, that’s Strictly out of order

Graham Norton has apologised for a ‘throwaway’ remark he made about not wanting to see two men dancing together on Strictly.

He told a magazine that same-sex couples would only confuse the judges because they wouldn’t be able to compare ‘like with like’.

Even though Norton has backtracked, I think he was on to something. When I heard that two men could be tripping the light fandango, I couldn’t help thinking back to an old episode of Steptoe & Son. Harold is courting a girl who is a keen ballroom dancer. He leads her to believe he’s a champion dancer and allows her to enter them in a competition.

Graham Norton has apologised for a ‘throwaway’ remark he made about not wanting to see two men dancing together on Strictly

Graham Norton has apologised for a ‘throwaway’ remark he made about not wanting to see two men dancing together on Strictly

When I heard that two men could be tripping the light fandango, I couldn’t help thinking back to an old episode of Steptoe & Son

When I heard that two men could be tripping the light fandango, I couldn’t help thinking back to an old episode of Steptoe & Son

Trouble is, he’s got two left feet. No problem, says Albert, I’ll teach you to dance. ‘You’ll make Lionel Blair look like a baby elephant.’

After a crash course in the waltz and the tango, Harold heads off full of confidence. He returns crestfallen, face like thunder. ‘We were disqualified,’ he says. ‘It’s all your fault, you taught me the woman’s steps, you daft pillock.

‘We took to the floor, the band struck up — and we both danced backwards. We ended up opposite ends of the ballroom and the band couldn’t play for laughing.

‘She burst into tears and her mother belted me round the earhole with a rolled-up copy of the Ballroom Gazette.

‘Eight days of non-stop practice and what’s the result? The only person I can dance with is you!’

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Thomas Stoppard and his journey from wartime refugee to our greatest living playwright

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thomas stoppard and his journey from wartime refugee to our greatest living playwright

TOM STOPPARD: A LIFE

by Hermione Lee (Faber £30, 860pp) 

Transport yourself, in these sad days of silenced theatres, to a full-house Old Vic on the evening of April 11, 1967.

It’s the opening night of Rosencrantz And Guildenstern Are Dead, first performed the previous summer at the Edinburgh Fringe where it had terrible reviews (‘sub-Beckett’, ‘sub-Pinter’), apart from one single rave one, which was enough to rescue both it and its creator Tom Stoppard from oblivion.

Stoppard, a chain-smoker and compulsive chewer of Jelly Babies, loathed first nights. He’d sat uncomfortably in his seat, hardly able to watch.

In the interval, he heard one man mutter to his wife, ‘I do wish they’d get on.’ Stoppard left, and spent the rest of the play in the pub, returning just in time for the end. The applause was rapturous. 

Tom Stoppard A Life takes a look at the eventful life from fleeing Czechoslovakia with his family at the age of one to his complicated love life. Pictured with his second wife, Miriam Moore-Robinson, who was a close friends with him and his ex-wife

Tom Stoppard A Life takes a look at the eventful life from fleeing Czechoslovakia with his family at the age of one to his complicated love life. Pictured with his second wife, Miriam Moore-Robinson, who was a close friends with him and his ex-wife

During his life he had two ten-year love affairs, first with Felicity Kendal (who was married to theatre director Michael Rudman, to whom she later returned) and then with Sinead Cusack while she was in a ¿turbulent and dramatic¿ marriage to Jeremy Irons. Pictured, Stoppard and Kendal together at the Adelphi Theatre in 1997

During his life he had two ten-year love affairs, first with Felicity Kendal (who was married to theatre director Michael Rudman, to whom she later returned) and then with Sinead Cusack while she was in a ‘turbulent and dramatic’ marriage to Jeremy Irons. Pictured, Stoppard and Kendal together at the Adelphi Theatre in 1997

After the first-night party he bought the next morning’s papers — the reviews were ecstatic.

Quite a reversal of fortunes for the little Jewish boy Tomas Straussler, who in 1939, aged one-and-a-half, had fled with his parents and brother from Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia to Singapore. 

When the Japanese invaded, he, his mother and his brother escaped to Colombo, Sri Lanka, and then India. Tom’s father was killed on another escaping ship that was bombed.

Just one of millions of shattered, dispersed middle-European assimilated-Jewish families; and it was not till much later in life that Tom discovered that his grandparents and aunts had been murdered in the Holocaust.

At the Mount Everest Hotel in Darjeeling, his widowed mother met Major Kenneth Stoppard, a square man who turned out to be xenophobic and anti-Semitic, but who offered the family security in England. They married in 1945. Thus the Czech boy became Tom Stoppard.

He embraced all things British, from cricket to fly-fishing to the Royal Family to (most enthusiastically) the language with all its punning possibilities. He relished writing lines such as, ‘The days of the digital watch are numbered.’

What a shot in the arm this sparkling, warm-hearted biography of Stoppard by Hermione Lee is! It’s 860 pages long (my heart sank when it landed on my knee), but you’re swept along with Stoppard’s boundless creative energy, and get caught up in his rich, varied, fizzing life.

He has always been anxious; has never taken his success for granted.

At the Mount Everest Hotel in Darjeeling, his widowed mother met Major Kenneth Stoppard, a square man who turned out to be xenophobic and anti-Semitic, but who offered the family security in England and Thomas took his surname

At the Mount Everest Hotel in Darjeeling, his widowed mother met Major Kenneth Stoppard, a square man who turned out to be xenophobic and anti-Semitic, but who offered the family security in England and Thomas took his surname

Amazingly, in 1967, he’d just had his first novel published and had high hopes for the novel and low expectations for the play. 

The novel sold 688 copies in the first five months. The play turned out to be the first of a string of blazing theatrical triumphs performed by top actors all over the world — although there have always been some who have pronounced his plays ‘too clever by half’ or, as one person recently wryly summed up the entire Stoppard oeuvre: ‘a play within a play within a drama GCSE syllabus’.

He had to work hard to prove he was more than just a clever-clogs genius at mental and verbal acrobatics; that he had a heart. 

It was his second wife Miriam who advised him to write a ‘love play’, The Real Thing.

 ‘The Tin Man had a heart after all,’ reviewers discovered. But when Stoppard and Miriam separated after 20 years of marriage, he said to her, ‘But Miriam, I loved you so much.’ And she replied, ‘Really? You never told me.’ So, heart or no heart? 

In 1967, Thomas had his first novel published and had high hopes for the novel and low expectations for the play. The novel sold 688 copies in the first five months but the play was a huge success

In 1967, Thomas had his first novel published and had high hopes for the novel and low expectations for the play. The novel sold 688 copies in the first five months but the play was a huge success

Well, if you read this book, you’ll see a full, pumping organ of emotion and empathy, and will get to know a kind man who wrote letters to his mother every week till the day she died, but who also had a deep need to be alone to think and create those mind-bending plots, at his desk, while smoking.

In his first London lodgings in the early 1960s, he tore the sandpaper off a matchbox and glued it to the desk, so he wouldn’t need to put his pen down for a second to light up.

It was while living here as a young theatre critic that he started dating a co-lodger, Jose Ingle. 

They married, moved to a thatched cottage in Marlow, Bucks, and had two children, Ollie and Barnaby, but as his success took off, Jose became possessive, then clinically depressed, drinking a bottle of Pernod a day.

Stoppard started up an affair with Miriam, a doctor, while he was married to his first wife Jose. Miriam was friends with both him and Jose. Pictured, Thomas and Miriam

Stoppard started up an affair with Miriam, a doctor, while he was married to his first wife Jose. Miriam was friends with both him and Jose. Pictured, Thomas and Miriam 

Stoppard met his first wife at his first London lodgings in the early 1960s when he was working as theatre critic. He later married the co-lodger Jose Ingle (pictured with Stoppard at their home.

Stoppard met his first wife at his first London lodgings in the early 1960s when he was working as theatre critic. He later married the co-lodger Jose Ingle (pictured with Stoppard at their home.

During their affair, Thomas and Miriam would write love letter to each other and Jose found the and began cutting them up and demanded Miriam and Thomas come home from the London restaurant they were at

During their affair, Thomas and Miriam would write love letter to each other and Jose found the and began cutting them up and demanded Miriam and Thomas come home from the London restaurant they were at 

Lee conveys the crackling sexual chemistry that started to develop between Stoppard and a close married friend of theirs, Miriam Moore-Robinson. 

They started writing love letters in a state of ‘fearful, ecstatic excitement’. Alone one evening, Jose found Miriam’s letters and started cutting them up, summoning both Miriam and Tom, who had to dash home from a London restaurant.

‘Isn’t it wonderful, darlings, we’re together!’ Miriam gushed to their friends after they moved into a new home together with his children. 

Stoppard — who would support Jose financially for the rest of her life — was relieved to be with someone ‘independent, charismatic and competent’. 

Miriam was a successful doctor and businesswoman. She felt a bit of a misfit at luvvie parties held by leading London theatre critic Kenneth Tynan — until she started asking actors to tell her about their ailments.

‘This relationship should be one that lasts,’ I thought. All the right boxes were ticked: lovely home, clever wife, two more sons, all living happily together in a beautiful house in Buckinghamshire. Then Miriam suggested they trade up to a grander house down the road, Iver Grove, which Stoppard soon nicknamed ‘the Iver Grove Leisure Centre’ because it had a pool, tennis courts and a cricket pitch, and cost a fortune to keep up.

Stoppard ¿ who would support Jose financially for the rest of her life ¿ was relieved to be with someone ¿independent, charismatic and competent¿

Stoppard — who would support Jose financially for the rest of her life — was relieved to be with someone ‘independent, charismatic and competent’

In 2014, Stoppard married Sabrina Guinness, wealthy daughter of the banking branch of the Guinness family, and they live happily in Dorset. Pictured, the couple on their wedding day at Wimborne Registry Office

In 2014, Stoppard married Sabrina Guinness, wealthy daughter of the banking branch of the Guinness family, and they live happily in Dorset. Pictured, the couple on their wedding day at Wimborne Registry Office

The drive to make more money sent them both flying around the globe. They passed each other in mid-air, in their frantic, high-earning lives, missing their sons’ school matches. 

Stoppard took on the job of highly paid (but mostly uncredited) dialogue-improver for Hollywood blockbusters ranging from Star Wars to 102 Dalmatians to fund the family’s expensive existence. This lifestyle drove the marriage into the ground.

They separated in 1988 and Stoppard moved, with some relief, to a quiet flat in Chelsea. (‘Silence is the sound of time passing,’ is another of his immortal lines.)

He then had two ten-year love affairs, first with Felicity Kendal (who was married to theatre director Michael Rudman, to whom she later returned) and then with Sinead Cusack while she was in a ‘turbulent and dramatic’ marriage to Jeremy Irons — who knew about the affair.

Both those relationships, thrilling when Stoppard was directing his lovers in parts he’d written for them, burned themselves out. The one with Cusack ended when she was reunited with the son she’d given up for adoption, and turned her attention to him.

Stoppard and his second wife Miriam separated in 1988 and he moved, with some relief, to a quiet flat in Chelsea

Stoppard and his second wife Miriam separated in 1988 and he moved, with some relief, to a quiet flat in Chelsea

Daniel Radcliffe, playing the role of Rosencrantz and Joshua McGuire playing the role of Guildenstern in Thomas Stoppard's play Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead

Daniel Radcliffe, playing the role of Rosencrantz and Joshua McGuire playing the role of Guildenstern in Thomas Stoppard’s play Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead

TOM STOPPARD: A LIFE by Hermione Lee (Faber £30, 860pp)

TOM STOPPARD: A LIFE by Hermione Lee (Faber £30, 860pp) 

In 2014, Stoppard married Sabrina Guinness, wealthy daughter of the banking branch of the Guinness family, and they live happily in Dorset.

Stoppard was a ruthless editor and shortener of his plays, always willing to shave off 15 minutes here and there to keep the audience from falling asleep or walking out. I slightly wished he’d been given free rein to shave off some pages of this book, especially where Lee provides lengthy synopses of each play, some of which go on for ten or 12 pages.

Stoppard asked her to write the book and fact-checked it, but perhaps didn’t remark on its swollen length. But so compellingly does Lee convey the exuberance and unpredictability of both his plays and his life that I’m now yearning to see a Stoppard play in a theatre again. Leopoldstadt opened on February 12 and closed, as did so much else, on March 14.

‘Life is a gamble at terrible odds. If it was a bet you wouldn’t take it,’ is a line from Rosencrantz And Guildenstern Are Dead. Indeed you wouldn’t. Stoppard’s life could have taken a very different turn in the cataclysms of the 20th century — not only the Holocaust but the brutal Communist crackdowns in Prague in 1968. He has forever been grateful for his astounding luck.

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle ‘must have been Finding Freedom’s source’ 

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prince harry and meghan markle must have been finding freedoms source

The authors of a biography of Meghan and Harry were secretly briefed by her friends, court documents alleged yesterday.

Finding Freedom (pictured) was filled with secrets from the Duchess of Sussex’s closest friends

 Finding Freedom (pictured) was filled with secrets from the Duchess of Sussex’s closest friends

Meghan’s friends reportedly told authors everything from her views on filming sex scenes to what she thought about the Duchess of Cambridge.

Finding Freedom was filled with secrets from the Duchess of Sussex’s closest friends, who acted as ‘de facto media relations agents’ to ensure the book was ‘favourable’ to her, it was said.

Meghan has denied ‘collaborating’ with the authors Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand.

But documents lodged at the High Court yesterday claimed that in 2018, Meghan ‘began to be increasingly frustrated that the press coverage she received was not to her liking and did not do her justice’.

She and Harry met the writers to discuss ways of helping them to write their biography, it is alleged.

The couple allegedly arranged for their friends to pass on information that could have originated only from Harry or Meghan themselves.

Insights included a detailed account of their relationship, such as who said ‘I love you’ first, and the former Suits actress’s feelings on having to film a sex scene when she was starting her screen career.

The book also featured her views on a Suits love scene which had been uploaded to a pornographic website. 

Other examples, the court was told, included details from the duchess’s first meeting with the Duke of Cambridge, such as the internal decor of his home.

Meghan’s ‘relationship with the Duchess of Cambridge and her feelings about the duchess at various times’ were also revealed, the document alleged.

The birth plan of the couple’s son Archie and how Meghan felt at the moment he was born also featured in Finding Freedom, along with a ‘detailed account’ of the Sussexes’ visit to George and Amal Clooney’s villa in Lake Como.

The authors of a biography of Meghan and Harry were secretly briefed by her friends, court documents alleged yesterday

The authors of a biography of Meghan and Harry were secretly briefed by her friends, court documents alleged yesterday

The court document, filed by lawyers for the Mail on Sunday as part of a privacy action brought by Meghan, said: ‘Much of the information in the book could have originated only from [the duchess] and/or her husband themselves.’

The newspaper’s document also alleged that in November or December 2018, Meghan told the communications team at Kensington Palace that ‘her friends were assisting the authors’.

Meghan is suing the Mail on Sunday – the sister paper of the Daily Mail – for breach of privacy after it published extracts from a letter she sent her father Thomas Markle.

The newspaper said the letter also featured in the biography and it has been given the court’s permission to include the book in its defence for the trial which is due to start in January.

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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