Woman awarded £2.8m in divorce case


Close up of 50 pound notes

A woman told a High Court judge how she returned to her wealthy husband after separating because she realised that that she had to "extricate myself slowly".

The woman said the reconciliation allowed her to "hide possessions ... under friends' beds".

She said she "felt guilty" but had to "put things in place".

Detail emerged as Mr Justice Coleridge ruled on how much money the woman should get following the breakdown of the marriage.

The judge concluded that she should get a package worth nearly £3 million - after analysing evidence at a hearing in the Family Division of the High Court in London.

Mr Justice Coleridge said the man had offered a package worth £2.1 million and the woman had asked for £3.9 million.

He said the woman's husband had described the reconciliation as "little more than a sham" and was "cynical".

But Mr Justice Coleridge said he did not think that the woman had returned for the "sole purpose" of improving her financial position.

The judge said he thought that the reconciliation had been "genuine on both sides".

He said the man was a businessman in his 60s and the woman was in her 50s and had run a restaurant business.

The judge said they had assets worth more than £7 million and had lived near London.

Mr Justice Coleridge said the couple had lived a "good life", had a stable block at their home and had travelled to Australia twice a year.

And he concluded that the woman should get a £2.8 million package - which included £1 million for a house, a £1 million capital sum and a property worth nearly £400,000.

The woman - who had a keen interest in riding - had asked for enough money to buy a home with stables.

But Mr Justice Coleridge said he was "not persuaded" that her housing needs "included an equestrian element".

And he said he did not accept that £1 million was not enough for her to buy a house in the area near London where she wanted to live.

The judge said the woman had made a statement about the reconciliation during litigation.

He read part of the statement when delivering his ruling, saying the woman had told how she "realised I had to go back to extricate myself slowly", "hide possessions ... under friends' beds" and how she "felt guilty" but had to "put things in place".

Mr Justice Coleridge said the marriage had broken down after 10 years. The husband said in "real terms" it had lasted seven years - because he said his wife had returned in order to "manipulate her financial future".

The judge said no-one should be identified.

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