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Laurence Fox hits back at ex-wife Billie Piper as she admits co-parenting struggles

Laurence Fox hits back at ex-wife Billie Piper as she admits co-parenting struggles

Actor-turned-right-wing agitator Laurence Fox has publicly slated his ex-wife Billie Piper, accusing her of forcing him into “crippling” court battles, after she laid bare the “enormous difficulty” of co-parenting with him.

The British actress, 41, has two sons with him from their nine-year relationship, which ended in divorce in 2016.

Asked about having to co-parent with Fox, who has gained notoriety in the UK for his politics and high-profile on-air sexism storm, she admitted the toll had become “enormously difficult.”

In rare comments about their divorce, she told British Vogue she “had to make some choices and a divorce speaks for itself” and that Fox’s family, including his sister Lydia Fox and her husband Richard Ayoade, “might have a more interesting take” on him.

“I close everything down and keep a very strict routine with the kids so that there’s consistency. I keep them close. That’s all I can do,” she said.

“I’ve learnt I have a lot of resilience I didn’t know I had. I’ve had to learn the hard way that you can only control yourself and how you react to things. It’s really f***ing hard.”

Billie piper said it’s ‘enormously difficult’ to co-parent with ex Laurence Fox (Getty Images)
Billie piper said it’s ‘enormously difficult’ to co-parent with ex Laurence Fox (Getty Images)

Piper has remained largely silent on her former partner, barring an intervention last year where she admitted fearing her children “were no longer safe” in her house” in the wake of Fox’s incendiary activism.

“Of course I have feelings on that. I’m not dead inside,” she admitted.

The I Hate Suzie and Rare Beasts actor and writer revealed she often asks people to refrain from telling her about Fox’s views.

She added that those interested in her opinion on the subject were more likely to get a good insight into his behaviour if they asked his family members, including his sister Lydia Fox and brother-in-law Richard Ayoade.

“Look, if people want to try and understand the workings of the guy, they ought to either ask him or his family,” Piper told Vogue, adding: “Ask Richard Ayoade what he thinks, or his wife Lydia. They might have a more interesting take.

“I try to keep people from telling me stuff but it’s really, really hard. I don’t read it but everyone wants to talk about it. Sometimes I have to say to people, ‘Please don’t bring this to me, now or ever.’”

Piper said the situation has made her “feel stronger in many ways”, but acknowledged that co-parenting had become “enormously difficult”.

Laurence Fox and ex-wife Billie Piper photographed in 2012 (Getty Images)
Laurence Fox and ex-wife Billie Piper photographed in 2012 (Getty Images)

Fox, who has caused uproar numerous times over the past few years, hit back, posting a bitter rant on social media, saying he took exception to the claim that co-parenting with him was enormously difficult.

“I have never tried to deny our boys access to their mum and I would never wish her anything other than a stable family...” he wrote.

“My only focus these past years has been to be present in their lives and be a loving dad. I’m not perfect, but I’ve done my absolute best to put the kids first.

“The reason co-parenting is hard is because the secretive family court system is hugely weighted towards the mother. It is a system totally unfit for purpose.”

He said he had instigated family therapy, and he took full responsibility for his role in the breakdown of the marriage.

And he attacked her decision to “play the victim”, saying it was anyone’s guess why she was pursuing him through the courts, triggering “crippling” litigation.

In 2020, in a BBC Question Time appearance he accused a woman of colour of racism after she called him a “white privileged male”.

More recently, the actor lost a High Court libel battle with two people he referred to as paedophiles on social media, and it was also revealed earlier this year that media watchdog Ofcom ruled that Fox’s “misogynistic” comments about female journalist Ava Evans on Dan Wootton’s GB News show broke broadcasting rules.

The interaction, which was the most-complained about TV moment of 2023, led to his firing from the channel.

Piper’s interview can be read in full in the April issue of British Vogue, available via digital download and on newsstands from 19 March.