Profile: Dame Elizabeth Gloster


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The Independent Online

When Roman Abramovich’s lawyers asked Dame Elizabeth Gloster for the next hearing – at which one matter to be discussed will be the payment of their fees – to be held as soon as possible, her answer was not to be argued with: “I’m going on holiday.”

The 63-year-old, the first woman judge at the high-stakes Commercial Court, delivered a damning ruling against Boris Berezovsky, and had regularly interrupted his long-winded answers, requesting, not all that politely, that he “answer the question”.

Dame Elizabeth – who caused a stir in legal circles by leaving her eminent QC husband of 30 years to marry Sir Oliver Popplewell, a former high court judge 22 years her senior – recently paid the court artist Priscilla Coleman around £1,000 for two large sketches of her, imperious in her elevated seat in Court 26, with Britain’s top barristers and Russia’s most notorious oligarchs stooped in decided deference.