19 MARCH 2008

With 22 months of difficult divorce proceedings now behind them, Sir Paul McCartney and Heather Mills are finally free to get on with their lives.

As they do so, the full details of the judge's ruling in their High Court hearing have been made public.

In a 58-page judgement model-turned-campaigner Heather was praised by the court as a "kindly person and devoted to her charitable causes."

She has coped "under enormous strain", said Mr Justice Bennett, "(and) conducted her own case before me with a steely, yet courteous, determination."

However, the judge also added that evidence from Heather relating to both her ex-husband's and her own finances had been "inconsistent, inaccurate and less than candid".

Central to disagreements between the pair were financial arrangements for their four-year-old daughter Bea. Sir Paul told the judge that his older children had very little security and attended state school. However, the former Beatle has agreed to pay childcare and school fees on top of a £35,000 yearly maintenance grant.

As the story of what went on in courtroom 34 was released, Heather admitted that emotions had sometimes run high during the case. The mother-of-one confirmed to the BBC that she'd poured a "whole jug of water on (Paul's lawyer) Fiona Shackleton's head" when it finally ended.

Photo: © Alphapress.com
The High Court judge said although Sir Paul's ex-wife was "a kindly person" and "devoted to charitable causes", some of her evidence had been "inconsistent" Photo: © RexClick on photo to enlarge