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TUG OF WAR OVER TIGER; TOGETHER: Tiger Lily, right, is now back with sisters Fifi Trixibelle, Peaches, Pixie and Sir Bob Geldof, inset.

PAULA YATES' little orphan Tiger Lily will be the subject of a bitter tug- of-love battle.

Last night, she was being comforted by her three half-sisters after Yates' former husband Sir Bob Geldof was given interim custody.

But his hopes of bringing up the bewildered four-year-old with his own children were thrown into chaos as her grandmother vowed to seek custody.

Patricia Glassop, whose late rock star son Michael Hutchence was Tiger's dad, wants Tiger Lily brought up in California by her daughter, Tina.

Patricia, who fought a bitter battle with Paula over the dead rock star's pounds 6million fortune and rights to see Tiger, has warned she will contest any moves by Geldof to adopt the child.

Tina said: "I will go for as long as it takes to win the battle for Tiger's sake. I have brought up two beautiful children and for the last nine months I have looked after a little Japanese boy since he was born."

Tina and her mother, who has re-married and lives in Queensland, Australia, have written Just A Man, a biography of the INXS star, which is said to criticise heavily both Geldof and Paula.

Patricia said news of Paula's death had come as a "shock, but not a surprise".

Yesterday, Tiger Lily moved in with Geldof and Paula's other three children - Fifi Trixibelle, 17, Peaches, 10 and seven-year-old Pixie - after the courts decided she should stay there until her future is decided.

The little girl found her mother dead in bed at the weekend. The innocent youngster had thought she was only asleep and repeatedly called to her, "Wake up mummy". She still has not been told that her mother is dead.

A friend phoned the house in St Luke's Mews, Notting Hill, London, and Tiger Lily told her she couldn't waken her mum.

An inquest into her death will begin in London tomorrow after a post mortem examination proved inconclusive.

Further tests will be carried out to establish exactly how the tragic TV presenter died.

Drugs and alcohol were found in the bedroom of her London home when her body was discovered on Sunday morning.

Paula's life had degenerated into a blur of drugs and alcohol after the love of her life, Hutchence, was found hanged by a belt in a hotel room in Sydney in November 1997.

Yesterday, a statement from the Official Solicitor said: "Tiger Lily has today been confirmed as a ward of court by Mrs Justice Hogg.

"The Official Solicitor has been appointed to represent Tiger Lily within the wardship proceedings.

"By Mrs Justice Hogg's order of today's date, the interim care and control of Tiger Lily has been committed to Sir Bob Geldof."

Yesterday, at his home in Bellvue Hills, Sydney, Hutchence's 72-year- old father, Kell, backed the move by the courts.

He said: "There's to be no fighting. We are all in this together in this very unpleasant situation.

"She is in good hands at present with Bob and her sisters and they seem to be weathering the sadness of the whole thing reasonably well.

"We are still reeling from the very, very sad news. It's just terrible to think that Tiger Lily has lost both her mummy and daddy. It's just so sad and I will be talking to the various parties who have Tiger's future welfare at heart, to see what arrangements will be made.

"I think it would be wrong to separate Tiger from her sisters. I would love to have Tiger here in Australia, but it would not be the right thing to do.It is tearing at my heart. I just feel shattered for my beloved Tiger."

Hutchence killed himself in 1997 after a blazing row over the phone with Sir Bob over whether Paula could bring Tiger Lily to Australia for a Christmas holiday

At the time Kell strongly attacked Geldof blaming him for adding to the pressure which lead to Hutchence's death in a Sydney hotel room.

Yesterday, Kell, sifting through treasured pictures of Michael, Paula and Tiger, said he had phoned Bob in a gesture of reconciliation.

Kell has had two heart by-passes and recently left hospital after a after a serious respiratory illness.

He is in such poor health doctors recommended he did not fly to London to be with Tiger Lily.

But he hopes to be well enough to attend Paula's funeral and spend time with the granddaughter he hasn't seen for two years.

He said: "I haven't seen my dear little Tiger for two years and I would give anything to be able to get on a plane and be with her at this terrible time. But I have only just come out of hospital after five days with a respiratory infection.

"The doctors stuck a tube down my chest and I have an air bubble there so the doctors have told me it is too dangerous for me to fly."

He said Tiger had a legal guardian, financial adviser Colin Diamond who is also her godfather.

Hutchence asked Mr Diamond in his will to look after Tiger Lily's financial and personal well being.

Kell said: "Tiger does have a legal guardian in Colin Diamond but I am not clear now as to who will get custody of Tiger. I will be seeking advice from everybody involved in Tiger's welfare in due course."

Earlier, he insisted that previous reports that he had attempted to gain custody of Tiger Lily were untrue.

He said: "I only went for temporary care at one stage when her mother was not well and going into a clinic. That's always been interpreted as trying to get custody but all I wanted to do was help when Paula was not well."

He said "Paula was a great mum. All the kids loved Paula because she was such a character. She was such a character and highly intelligent.

"I last spoke to Paula on Tiger's fourth birthday, July 22nd and she sounded OK.

"On Sunday night just before we got the shocking news of Paula's death, a friend had called from London to say how well Paula was. We are just numb."

He added: "My heart goes out to Tiger Lily, my sweet little granddaughter, and I can only hope and pray that she will be well looked after in the future.

"I know that she is surrounded by her sisters, who will be of great support to her.

Michael Hutchence's band INXS also expressed their sadness over Paula's death saying the news was "unbelievable".
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Author:Smith, Anna; Page, Cara
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Sep 19, 2000
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