Nightclub owner is left with £35k legal costs over hotel venture

SEBASTIAN SHAKESPEARE: Nightclub friend of Prince Harry is left with £35,000 legal costs over hotel venture after he’s given a courtroom caning by James Hewitt’s ex… who played ‘games mistress’ during ‘Headmaster’s Thrash’ evening at college

With a courtroom encounter looming, Howard Spooner (pictured above with wife Lucy) withdrew his demands, and, following a two-hour court hearing this week, was ordered to pay the couple £35,000 in legal costs

He was once as thick as thieves with Guy Pelly, Prince Harry’s partner in crime during the royal’s carefree bachelor days.

But that alliance unravelled in a bitter legal spat when the fashionable London nightclub they jointly owned was forced to close.

Now history has very nearly repeated itself. 

On this occasion Howard Spooner’s battle has been not with the ebullient Pelly — who has lost his driving licence on three separate occasions — but with U.S. multi-millionaire Brook Johnson and his glamorous wife, Sally, one-time squeeze of Princess Diana’s notorious lover, James Hewitt.

And it has, I can disclose, left Spooner, 50, with a £35,000 bill in legal costs, following a courtroom judgment against him.

This was not an outcome the twice-married entrepreneur envisaged after agreeing to become equal partners with the Johnsons in The George, a landmark 17-bedroom hotel on the Isle of Wight.

Declaring himself ‘really excited’ after they acquired the hotel last year, Spooner spoke of making its restaurant ‘a bit like The Ivy’. 

Seemingly inspired by his previous partnership with Pelly, Spooner added that there would also be ‘a cocktail bar with a mixologist bartender’.

But differences over money soon surfaced.

Spooner, who, after the closure of Public, their London nightclub, said that he wouldn’t work with Pelly again — ‘not in a million years’ — claimed that he was £85,000 out of pocket and demanded the Johnsons ‘stump up what they owe’.

He subsequently issued a second demand for payment of £16,612, plus interest. But the Johnsons didn’t budge. 

Declaring himself ‘really excited’ after they acquired the hotel last year, Spooner spoke of making its restaurant ‘a bit like The Ivy’. The George is pictured above

With a courtroom encounter looming, Spooner withdrew his demands, and, following a two-hour court hearing this week, was ordered to pay the couple £35,000 in legal costs.

Perhaps he should have known better than to take on the spirited Sally.

While at secretarial college in Oxford, she attended ‘The Headmaster’s Thrash’, a boisterous evening during which her role was ‘games mistress’.

Spooner may feel that he’s suffered six of the best.

Dame Judi Dench has been using lockdown to learn Shakespearean poetry. 

‘I’m trying to do things during this lockdown that are beneficial. I’ve tried to learn all of Shakespeare’s sonnets,’ she says. 

The stage and screen star adds: ‘I’ve learnt about nine now and there are 154 so I’ve got quite a bit to go.’ 

Sounds like a labour of love. 

Balloons go up for Baroness Bra’s girl

Lingerie founder Michelle Mone — aka Baroness Bra — burst with maternal pride this week when her lookalike daughter, Beth, turned 21.

Unable to throw a huge party due to lockdown, the beauty blogger marked the occasion with an intimate gathering at home in Glasgow — complete with a colourful balloon display. 

Sporting a sleeveless dress, she was joined by her father, Michelle’s ex-husband, businessman Michael, as well as a small group of friends.

Michelle, 48, was sad she couldn’t be there but wrote to her online: ‘You have become a stunning young lady with the most amazing kind heart.’

Lingerie founder Michelle Mone — aka Baroness Bra — burst with maternal pride this week when her lookalike daughter, Beth, turned 21

The creative juices have been flowing at the Cotswolds home of Fifty Shades Of Grey actor Jamie Dornan and his musician wife, Amelia Warner

Lockdown proves a hit with 50 Shades Jamie’s Amelia

The creative juices have been flowing at the Cotswolds home of Fifty Shades Of Grey actor Jamie Dornan and his musician wife, Amelia Warner.

She says she’s been able to focus on her career during lockdown because Jamie has been spending more time with their two kids. 

The singer has even been able to release her new single, Haven, this summer. 

‘Haven is all about the warmth and safety of your home. I recorded it here,’ she says.

‘Lockdown has been great. To have my husband home the whole time has been incredible; the kids have loved it. I’ve felt really creative and I’ve managed to have a lot of time to make music.’

There She Goes star Jessica Hynes still has mixed emotions about receiving a Bafta for the comedy last year. 

‘I laddered my tights right before the ceremony began so I had to go up on stage bare-legged, which I felt a bit self-conscious about. A very, very kind old friend texted after the show and said her husband had just said “Legs!” in a slightly Sid James way when I went up.’

Dame Emma demands new name for school

Dame Emma Thompson has added her name to a petition calling for a primary school to be renamed after its former head teacher.

The double Oscar-winner was once a pupil at Beckford Primary School in West Hampstead, which is named after William Beckford, a slave-using sugar plantation owner who became the Mayor of London.

The governing body has agreed to consult parents and staff over a replacement name.

The frontrunner is the late Beryl Gilroy, one of the UK’s first black head teachers, who ran the school between 1969 and 1982.

Wimbledon ace Andy Murray admits his musical tastes leave a bit to be desired. ‘Some of the songs on my playlist are too embarrassing to repeat,’ says the champ. 

‘Ed Sheeran and Lewis Capaldi are two of my favourite artists, but I’ll listen to just about everything.’

Any old racket then, Andy?

Racing heir Sam Sangster is galloping ahead to ensure the next generation follows in his footsteps. The son of late racing magnate Robert Sangster has bought his one-month-old son a mount.

Sam became a father last month when his wife, jewellery designer Madeleine, 32, gave birth to a boy whom they named Leo Robert Reggie Sangster as a tribute to Sam’s father. 

Yesterday the baby received an ownership certificate from Brian Meehan Racing in Marlborough, Wiltshire, where Sam is a bloodstock agent. 

‘We thought this would be a great time to introduce our newest and no doubt youngest owner, Mr Leo Robert Reggie Sangster, who is now a proud owner of our lovely club horse, Tanfantic,’ they said.

Borat star Sacha Baron Cohen is already a father to three young children, but he and his Hollywood actress wife, Isla Fisher, have decided to expand the family

Borat’s wife Isla has her hands full…

Borat star Sacha Baron Cohen is already a father to three young children, but he and his Hollywood actress wife, Isla Fisher, have decided to expand the family.

Isla, 44, who has spent lockdown at home in LA with Hammersmith-born Sacha, 48, and their daughters Olive, 12, Elula, nine, and five-year-old son, Montgomery, reveals they have acquired a sheepadoodle puppy named Maisy.

She shared a picture online as she carried her down some outdoor steps. 

‘Welcome to the family,’ she captioned it.

The new member of the family is in addition to their beagle, Busta, who they got in 2018.

Source: Read Full Article