High Court dismisses Schillings’ libel case against The Telegraph

Petra Ecclestone

Schillings name partner Keith Schilling instructed One Brick Court’s Manuel Barca to represent the claimant in her action against the newspaper.

Solicitor advocate David Price, name partner at David Price Solicitors & Advocates, represented The Daily Telegraph.

The complaint was brought after the newspaper’s diary column in June this year published comments allegedly made by Ecclestone about Sir Paul McCartney’s call for meat-free Mondays.

She reportedly said: “I’m not a veggie and I don’t have much time for people like the McCartneys and Annie Lennox.”

Barca was instructed to pursue The Daily Telegraph for damages for libel because the article implied Ecclestone was disrespectful and dismissive of the McCartneys and the singer Annie Lennox to the point of being willing to disparage them publicly for ­promoting ­vegetarianism.

Price rejected the claim arguing that the words ­complained of were incapable of being defamatory to the claimant. Upholding this argument Mrs Justice Sharp said the article would most likely be dismissed by most readers, but “even if read with care I simply do not think it’s capable of lowering the claimant in the estimation of right thinking members of ­society”.

She added that whether Ecclestone had made such comments was immaterial, the claim should not be ­construed as defamation.