Barclay v Barclay [2021] EWFC 40

Date of Case: 30 March 2021
Case Reference: [2021] EWFC 40

Stewart Leech QC acted for the wife in this application in the High Court for permission for the publication of a judgment in financial remedy proceedings.

The case concerned financial remedy proceedings between Lady Hiroko Barclay and Sir Frederick Barclay. The proceedings were heard in private in accordance with FPR 2010 r 27.10.  An interim reporting restrictions order (RRO) was made in those proceedings, and this hearing was to determine whether the substantive judgment should be published, and whether the RRO should remain in place. The parties agreed that the award and the parties’ open positions should be made public. 

The wife said that the public had the right to know about the husband’s behaviour during the proceedings – behaviour which had removed his right to privacy. The husband opposed any reporting further to the award and open positions. The media (Bloomberg and The Press Association) argued that the judgment was of general public interest. The Barclay family opposed publication on the basis that it may have an impact on their privacy and their financial affairs, but they did not know the content of the judgment.

The court noted that the starting point is privacy, but in rare cases a litigant’s conduct means the litigant is no longer protected from publicity (Lykiardopulo v Lykiardopulo [2010] EWCA Civ 1315). The court also considered the option of publishing a summary of the judgment. Neither party was in favour of publishing a summary.

The court found that the husband’s behaviour did not reach the threshold of misconduct in Lykiardopulo. The RRO remains in place in respect of the financial remedy judgment.

Bailii report:


Contact the Clerks

For help to select the right barrister for your requirements, please contact our clerking team.