Lady Jaqueline Killearn
"I wonder if this could be the oldest lady you've featured so far. Lady Jaqueline Killearn was 87 when this photo was taken. She's now 98 (2009)! Below is an article from our Daily Mail . What a fabulous dress though. I feel quite jealous!"
What the butler saw when he went to work at the £10 million Harley Street home of Lady Killearn was not what he expected.
Jacqueline Killearn, 98, the widow of Britain's Second World War ambassador to Cairo, long ago entertained guests including Winston Churchill and Charles de Gaulle.
To this day she maintains a vintage Rolls Royce Silver Cloud, and two homes - her London residence, and the 13-bedroom Haremere Hall in East Sussex, built in 1612 and surrounded by 145 acres.
But Italian butler Paolo Sclarandis claims he found Lady Killearn living amid squalor and behaving like a despot.
In an unfair dismissal claim, he says she called him a "selfish prat", "toad" and "monster", complained he cooked nothing but pasta, and hurled walking sticks at him during his 67-hour weeks.
And he claims the man he calls Lady Killearn's "toyboy" - Robert Hay, 61, a married man - was tight with her money.
For chauffeuring, Mr Sclarandis used not the Rolls but an 18-year-old Toyota with 210,000 miles on the clock. Mr. Sclarandis He says he was left £2,000 out of pocket doing his mistress's shopping. Mr
Sclarandis says he once gave Mr Hay and Lady Killearn a lift to Italy in his white van, and that Mr Hay begged him not to tell his wife about it.
He started work for
Lady Killearn in September 2004 but claims he was turfed out on to
Harley Street in August 2006 and barred from collecting anything from
A County Court has since ordered Lady Killearn to pay £1,500 to the employment agency that sent Mr Sclarandis for interview. But she claims her butler's 'abusive
behaviour' made her 'quite ill', and is fighting his tribunal claim, saying he was self employed, not an employee. Her regular companion Mr Hay, who when not with Lady
Killearn lives with his wife Sarah at Bickleigh Castle near Tiverton, Devon, refuses to return the butler's possessions until missing heirlooms reappear.
Mr Sclarandis, 64, of
Hammersmith, West London, who once dealt antiques in Turin, said:
"Lady Killearn is despotic - she still thinks she's living in the glory days of the
British Empire. But she lives in squalor, with dangerous wiring, piles of clothes in her cramped bedroom and her bathroom falling to pieces. And she treated me like a
slave. Her 'toyboy' Robert Hay reduced my envisaged salary from £18,200 to £14,400. When I arrived there a Sikh man called Singh Khalsa was sleeping on a
mattress in the basement in return for making Lady Killearn's breakfast."
Mr Sclarandis added:
"Mr Hay once wanted to pick some furniture up from Switzerland, so I
gave him and Lady Killearn a lift, even though she's in her nineties and it
was a 1,700-mile round trip. When we went on to Turin, they shared a hotel room. Mr Hay told me to keep the trip secret from his wife."
Lady Killearn's country home, Haremere Hall
Lady Killearn was 24
when she married Lord Killearn, then 54, in 1934. He died 30 years
later. They had two daughters and a son, the current Lord Killearn. Lady
Killearn said in a tribunal statement: "Paolo removed my furniture and disposed of it without permission." Her secretary Lydia Skerry said in a statement: "Paolo often
stood over Lady Killearn, bullying her. He used to feed Lady Killearn pasta drenched in olive oil, virtually raw meat, doughnuts or McDonald's food."
Mr Hay, a land agent,
told the Daily Mail: "Paolo was a self-employed part-time carer who
was often busy running his own furniture business. I called the police after
an old master painting went missing, and have a writ out against him over stolen furniture. He's just trying to make a quick buck."
Mr Hay insists his relationship with Lady Killearn is innocent, but conceded he had asked Mr Sclarandis not to tell his wife about the drive to the Continent.
"I said to Paolo, 'Say nothing, because I haven't cleared it with my wife', but I told her eventually. We shared a room in Turin, but it was two single beds."The unfair dismissal case continues in Ashford, Kent.
Return to PettiPictures Main Page
Return to homepage