Husband died without a will

THE widow of award-winning comedy writer Harry Thompson faces an uncertain financial future, as it was revealed her husband died without a will.

Mr Thompson died intestate last November and the regulations mean his widow Lisa inherits only £125,000 of his Elmilton estate. The rest of his fortune is to be split in two, with one half going to his two children, Billy, ten, and Betty, 12. Mrs Thompson, 34, will have access only to the interest on the. remaining half, which will go to his children on her death.

Last night she said: 'I am unable to comment on the financial details of the estate because it is in administration. Above all, the passage of time has done little or nothing to ameliorate the agony of Harry's loss.' But Mrs Thompson, a literary agent and aspiring author, now faces a struggle to stay in the couple's West London flat.

In an interview earlier this year she told how she would fight to save the flat. She said: 'Being here helps, because it's so full of him. I'd do anything to get the money to stay.'

Mr Thompson, 45, the genius behind shows such as Have I Got News For You and They Think It's All Over, had battled lung cancer for seven months when he died.
He had refused to acknowledge the tumours were killing him, believing he could fight the disease through willpower. But finally acknowledging in the last hours of his life that there would be no recovery, he fulfilled his promise to marry Lisa, his partner of two years, in a bedside ceremony.

The marriage automatically invalidated Mr Thompson's existing will. It is unclear if they were aware of this, as Mrs Thompson declined to answer any questions about her situation. Mr Thompson endured the public humiliation of the collapse of his first marriage when his wife wrote a 'Divorce Diary' column in the Daily Mail.

Fiona Duff, the mother of his children, penned a vicious account of their divorce after discovering his affair with 25-year-old writer Victoria Coren, whom she christened The Trollop'.

In an interview with The Mail on Sunday last year, Ms Duff revealed that she had made peace with her ex-husband in recent years and that she had a good relationship with Lisa.

While battling cancer, Mr Thompson wrote an autobiographical book called Penguins Stopped Play about the Captain Scott XI, the cricket team he founded while studying at Oxford University. It was published posthumously earlier this year.