South Yorkshire Police allegedly gave BBC a 'running commentary' of raid on Sir Cliff Richard's home

Sir Cliff Richard claims police gave the BBC a "running commentary" of a raid on his home, in legal papers outlining his £1.5 million court battle, it has been reported.

The star lodged a High Court writ stating that the broadcaster struck a deal with South Yorkshire Police, according to The Sun.

Sir Cliff, 76, is claiming aggravated damages and is requesting a "significant" portion of his legal costs are paid by the force and the corporation, it is said.

The court papers allegedly show that police press officer Lesley Card alerted BBC crime correspondent Dan Johnson to the raid.

Ms Card reportedly wrote in a text message: "Going in now, Dan."

Later the reporter is said to have replied: "Give me a shout before they take anything out, so we can get the chopper in place for a shot."

Sir Cliff was being investigated under Operation Yewtree, based on allegations dating between 1958 and 1983 by four men, when his home in Sunningdale, Berkshire, was searched.

Earlier this year the CPS announced that no charges would be brought as a result of the claims, which Sir Cliff always denied.

In the lawsuit, filed at the High Court on October 6, he reportedly says he was left feeling "publicly violated" by the alleged deal between the broadcaster and the police on the raid.

The Sun's frontpage today. Credit: News UK

The 26-page document is said to show Sir Cliff has spent more than £1 million on his lawsuit, and wants a "significant portion" of his legal costs paid and at least £200,000 in "aggravated damages".

Mr Johnson arranged a meeting at South Yorkshire Police headquarters where he told the officer in charge of the case he "knew everything", effectively "strong-arming" them into giving the BBC access, the legal papers reportedly state.

BBC director-general Tony Hall previously defended the live coverage of the raid, adding that the Home Affairs Select Committee "reviewed our decisions and said we see nothing wrong in the BBC decision to run the story".

But the BBC and South Yorkshire Police are contesting the claims but their defences have not been made public yet.