Veteran Sheffield-born politician Roy Hattersley was granted a ‘quickie’ divorce in 55 seconds yesterday – at the age of 80 from his wife of 57 years.
Baron Hattersley – under his full name of Roy Sydney George – was granted a decree nisi at London’s High Court due to the irretrievable breakdown of his 1956 marriage to wife Edith Mary, known as Molly.
District Judge Heather Macgregor granted him a decree on the grounds the couple had not lived together for five years, and he would now find it intolerable to live with her. She ruled ‘the marriage had irretrievably broken down, the facts found proved being five years’ separation’.
Five years’ separation meant he was entitled to divorce without the consent of his wife.
Neither was at court.
Baron Hattersley attended Sheffield City Grammar School and his mother, Enid, was a Sheffield councillor and later Lord Mayor of Sheffield in 1981.
He first became an MP in 1964 when elected for the Birmingham Sparkbrook constituency. He held his seat for the next eight general elections before standing down in 1997.
He held a number of posts rising to become Deputy Leader of the Labour Party after losing a leadership battle with Neil Kinnock.
He lives in the Peak District, and is Honorary Professor in the politics department at Sheffield University.