Paul McCartney & Heather Mills: DUNZO!

SIR Paul McCartney and his wife Heather are separating, the couple confirmed today.A statement said the couple had “found it increasingly difficult to maintain a normal relationship with constant intrusion into our private lives”.

The couple said they had agreed “with sadness” to “go our separate ways” but insisted the split was amicable.

The couple have been apart for three weeks after a series of rows.

A pal of McCartney, 63, said last night: “Paul hasn’t taken this decision without a lot of thought. He believes it’s the best thing at the moment.

“He hasn’t given up on his marriage — it’s just that they need some space.”

Ex-model Heather, 38, admitted last week that the pair had suffered “ups and downs” but insisted their marriage was not over.

Today’s statement said: “Having tried exceptionally hard to make our relationship work given the daily pressures surrounding us, it is with sadness that we have decided to go our separate ways.

“Our parting is amicable and both of us still care about each other very much but have found it increasingly difficult to maintain a normal relationship with constant intrusion into our private lives, and we have actively tried to protect the privacy of our child.

“Separation for any couple is difficult enough, but to have to go through this so publicly, especially with a small daughter, is immensely stressful.

“We hope, for the sake of our baby daughter, that we will be given some space and time to get through this difficult period.”

Multi-millionaire Sir Paul last week cut a lonely figure as he travelled near Monaco.

He was pictured drinking alone in a bar and walking around gloomily talking into his mobile phone.

Macca’s friend said: “Things between Heather and Paul aren’t necessarily over for good. They still care a lot for each other but have some serious thinking to do about their future.”

Meanwhile, Heather stayed with their daughter Beatrice, two, at their mansion in Hove, East Sussex.

If the pair divorce Heather would stand to pick up around £200million of Sir Paul’s £800million fortune as the couple have no prenuptial agreement.

The four-year marriage has been stormy. Many of the ex-Beatle’s pals secretly suspected it would never last.

Macca has often been on the receiving end of his wife’s fiery temper.

Friends of the pair have said that Heather struggles to cope with her husband’s worldwide fame.

Sir Paul’s lengthy separation from Heather is in stark contrast to his former marriage to Linda, who died in 1998.

The couple barely spent a night apart in 30 years.

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