Petra Ecclestone in court with ex-husband for latest hearing

Updated: 

Formula One heiress Petra Ecclestone and her billionaire ex-husband James Stunt have appeared at court for the latest round in a legal battle following their split.

The pair have been embroiled in acrimonious court hearings since the break-up of their marriage and are believed to have reached a divorce settlement in October last year.

Press reports at the time estimated there was a £5.5 billion fortune at stake in the proceedings.

Ms Ecclestone arrived for the hearing on Thursday at the Central Family Court in London with her sister Tamara and father Bernie, flanked by security guards.

Her family members were not allowed into the private hearing, but Formula One tycoon Bernie stayed with Petra until it was over and the pair kissed goodbye outside the court before leaving in separate cars.

Tycoon Bernie Ecclestone kisses his daughter Petra Ecclestone, as they leave London's Central Family Court where she had the latest hearing in her legal battle with ex-husband James Stunt following split. Nick Ansell/PA
Bernie Ecclestone kisses his daughter Petra, as they leave London's Central Family Court  (Nick Ansell/PA)

Mr Stunt left court before the hearing had finished.

Miss Ecclestone's legal team includes Fiona Shackleton, who represented Sir Paul McCartney in his divorce from Heather Mills.

Judge Gillian Brasse, presiding over the hearing, allowed members of the press to attend but ordered that nothing could be reported of the proceedings.

Tamara Ecclestone leaving London's Central Family Court, where her sister Petra Ecclestone had the latest hearing in her legal battle with ex-husband James Stunt following split. Nick Ansell/PA
Tamara Ecclestone leaving London's Central Family Court (Nick Ansell/PA)

Miss Ecclestone and Mr Stunt are believed to have reached an agreement over their £158 million mansion in Los Angeles and a Grade II-listed home in London's Chelsea, worth up to £100 million.

At a hearing in June last year the family court was told Mr Stunt signed a prenuptial agreement worth £16 million.

The couple married in 2011 at a multimillion-pound ceremony at Odescalchi Castle, Rome, when they and 350 guests were entertained by an array of pop stars.

They were previously urged to reach a compromise by Judge Martin O'Dwyer, who said it was "a very sad state of affairs" that the question of whether a relationship, which was essentially a private relationship, had broken down or not could not be determined between the parties.