Two of Monty Python star Terry Jones’ children launch legal battle with his second wife over estate
Monty Python legend Terry Jones’ children have launched a High Court battle with their late father’s widow over the estate that he left her in his will.
The Welsh-born comedian passed away last year at the age of 77, nine years after his marriage to the Swedish clothing designer Anna Soderstrom, 38.
But now his two adult children from his first marriage, Bill Jones, 45 and his sister Sally, 47, have claimed their father’s 2016 will, which entitled Ms Soderstrom to his home in Highgate, north London, does not stand.
They claim he did not have the mental capacity when he wrote the will as he was suffering from dementia and have launched a legal bid under the 1975 Inheritance Act, which allows unhappy family members to claim for ‘reasonable provision’, according to The Sun.
In March, Ms Soderstrom, who met Jones at a book signing event in 2005, sold the property in Highgate for £2.8million.
Terry Jones’ children have launched a High Court battle with their late father’s widow Anna Soderstrom, 38, over the estate that he left her in his will
Bill Jones, 45 and his sister Sally, 47, have claimed their father’s 2016 will, which entitled Ms Soderstrom to his home in Highgate, north London, does not stand as he did not have the mental capacity as he was suffering from dementia. Pictured: The star’s home in Highgate which was sold by his wife for £2.8million
Bill Jones (pictured above with his father in October 2016), 45 and his sister Sally have launched a legal bid under the 1975 Inheritance Act
But sources claim the money has gone towards legal fees as she faced inquiries from Mr Jones’s family about the care of her daughter Siri, 12, who she shared with the Monty Python star.
Whilst the contents of Jones’ will have not been disclosed, Ms Soderstrom is thought to be the main beneficiary and is reportedly listed as the primary defendant in the case.
The actor’s wife will argue that her husband did have the mental capacity when he wrote the will.
A source told The Times: ‘Anna has been left baffled by it. She has no plans to disinherit his children.
‘They are directors of the company that receives his royalties and she’s happy for that to continue — that is where the real value is.’
They added: ‘Anna is not a gold-digger, she is a very accomplished woman and they were together in a relationship for around 17 years.’
Ms Soderstrom met Jones at a book signing event in 2005 when she was a 23-year-old student at Oxford and was a member of the university’s belly-dancing club.
The pair married soon after Jones’ divorce to first wife Alison Telfer.
He and Ms Soderstrom then had their own child, Siri, now aged 12, together.
In 2016 it was announced that Jones had been diagnosed with primary progressive aphasia.
It is a form of frontotemporal dementia where symptoms get progressively worse over time as the brain tissue which is important for speech and language deteriorates.
Ms Soderstrom met Jones at a book signing event in 2005, when she was a student at Oxford, and was a member of the university’s belly-dancing club
The Monty Python star pictured above with his daughter Sally, who is now 47, in 1989
Terry Jones married his first wife Alison Telfer (pictured together) in 1970, and the pair shared children Sally and Bill
Jones, who passed away in January last year, co-directed films Monty Python And The Holy Grail with Gilliam and was the sole director on Life Of Brian (pictured) and The Meaning Of Life
The actor passed away at his home in Highgate, North London, in January last year.
Along with Eric Idle, Michael Palin, John Cleese, Graham Chapman and Terry Gilliam, Jones formed the legendary Monty Python comedy troupe.
Jones co-directed films Monty Python And The Holy Grail with Gilliam and was the sole director on Life Of Brian and The Meaning Of Life.
He was responsible for some of the most iconic lines in British comedy, ones that would go on to make a huge impact on society.
Following his death a message from the official Monty Python Twitter account read: ‘Farewell dear Terry J. Two down, four to go. Love Terry G, Mike, John & Eric.’
Film director Terry Gilliam described Jones as a ‘brilliant, constantly questioning, iconoclastic, righteously argumentative and angry but outrageously funny and generous and kind human being’, adding: ‘One could never hope for a better friend.’
While fellow Python star John Cleese said: ‘It feels strange that a man of so many talents and such endless enthusiasm, should have faded so gently away.
‘Of his many achievements, for me the greatest gift he gave us all was his direction of Life of Brian. Perfection.’ He added: ‘Two down, four to go.’