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Although they went on to have three children and his thriving business brought them unimaginable wealth, the pair divorced in 2003, and Linda went on to have a son with a new partner, leaving Ashley (according to friends) ‘heartbroken’.
Now, 13 years later, Linda, 50, is single again and Mike, 52, finds himself under extreme pressure as his empire is investigated for its working practices.
Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor are the most famous boomerang couple.
Victoria, now 69, raised their three sons, took care of the house and Nicholas’s mother, and ran a local knitwear business.‘Nicholas was from the generation that did nothing in the home,’ says Victoria.
‘When the children were young, he never changed a nappy. We used to go to Cornwall every year, but for me, it wasn’t a holiday – it was moving the children from one place to another.
Stacey had been in a new relationship and had a son, whom Paul is now raising as one of his own.
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I was under a lot of strain and I don’t think he noticed.
I began to feel there must be more to life.’In 1995, aged 48, Victoria moved to a rented cottage.
(‘Mike never wanted to lose Linda,’ said one insider. How can a couple go through the trauma of divorce (in this case a £50-million undertaking) and still have enough love and chemistry left over to restart romance several years down the line? Earlier this year Phil Collins happily reunited with his third wife Orianne, the mother of two of his sons, after they divorced and she married someone else.
Singer Paul Young reconciled with Stacey Smith, his wife of 29 years, following a three-year separation.
It made me realise the grass is not always greener, and for the first time I wondered if I’d been happier with Nicholas than I’d realised.’Nicholas, meanwhile, failed to find anyone else.