Business tycoon Trevor Hemmings in Times libel claim

The multi-millionaire owner of the Blackpool Tower has launched legal action against Times Newspapers over an article containing allegations over donations to the Conservative party.

Business tycoon Trevor Hemmings is suing over a Times story from 4 February headlined: “Tories back slot machines and win tycoon Trevor Hemmings’s £200,000 jackpot”.

The 73-year-old, who has variously been described in the national media as “reclusive and enigmatic” and as a “cloth cap billionaire” who was once a bricklayer’s apprentice, has traditionally shunned the media limelight in his rise to riches.

The recent article in The Times was accompanied by a photograph of Hemmings in his cloth cap with Conservative leader David Cameron at a Tory party fundraiser at Uttoxeter race course in 2007.

No papers are yet available on the writ, which was issued on Monday, but the article on the Times Online website is now flagged up with the warning: “This article is the subject of a legal complaint.”

The writ will not be made publicly available until Times Newspapers has acknowledged that it has been served.

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