A Swindon celebrity was left fearing for her children’s safety after her ex-husband’s political career rendered his home unsafe.

Billie Piper, who was born in the town in 1982, married fellow actor Laurence Fox in 2007 and had two sons with him.

The pair divorced in 2016 and Fox became more involved with politics, founding the Reclaim Party and even running for London mayor in 2021.

In recent years he has been a controversial figure in the media, and is now being sued for libel after a spat on the social media platform formerly known as Twitter in 2020.

Swindon Advertiser: Laurence Fox arriving at the Royal Courts Of Justice in London for his libel trial.Laurence Fox arriving at the Royal Courts Of Justice in London for his libel trial. (Image: PA)

The High Court case concerns an exchange about a decision by Sainsbury’s to provide a safe space for black employees during Black History Month.

Fox called for a boycott of the supermarket in October 2020 and was called “a racist” by the drag artist Crystal, former Stonewall trustee Simon Blake and actress Nicola Thorp.

The 45-year-old subsequently termed each of the trio as a “paedophile”, prompting the libel action by Mr Blake and the drag star, also known as Colin Seymour.

Mr Fox, who denies being a racist, is counter-suing the trio over their tweets and started his evidence in London on Monday morning.

Swindon Advertiser: The pair were married for almost a decade.The pair were married for almost a decade. (Image: PA)

While addressing the court, he revealed that his ex-wife Billie Piper was “concerned” that their two children were no longer safe in the house.

“I thought she had every right to feel that way, every mother would be worried,” he said.

In written submissions, Lorna Skinner KC, representing Mr Blake, Mr Seymour and Ms Thorp, said Mr Fox “has made a number of highly controversial statements about race”.

She added: “If and to the extent that Mr Fox has been harmed in his reputation, it is his own conduct and not the claimants’ comments on it that caused that harm.”

Swindon Advertiser: Laurence Fox moved his focus from acting to politics.Laurence Fox moved his focus from acting to politics. (Image: PA)

In his evidence discussing his call for a boycott of Sainsbury’s, Mr Fox said the supermarket had been “essentially emotionally blackmailing their customers” and that he has not shopped there since.

Fox continued: “I felt that rather than genuinely trying to tackle racism, Sainsbury’s were trying to improve their own image, branding themselves as the anti-racist supermarket.

“I see the phrase ‘safe space’ as just locally friendly language for discrimination by segregation, dividing people down the line of skin colour.”

The trial before Mrs Justice Collins Rice is due to conclude later this week with a decision expected at a later date.