Sir Michael Parkinson has accepted £25,000 libel damages over a newspaper claim that he had lied about his family background.

Sir Michael was at London’s High Court for the settlement of his action against Associated Newspapers.

He said he would donate the sum in full to two charities – the Alexander Devine Children’s Cancer Trust and a school for orphans in South Africa.

His solicitor-advocate, Mark Thomson, told Mr Justice Eady that the article – Who’s Telling Parkies in the Daily Mail in May last year – caused considerable distress and harm to Sir Michael, 74.

The presenter has described his upbringing in the mining community of Cudworth, near Barnsley, in his autobiography.

The article suggested that he had behaved in a grossly insensitive way towards his elderly uncle, Bernard Parkinson.

It alleged he had intentionally lied about his family background and his father, by painting a false picture of a harmonious and close knit family and by presenting his father as an honest and well-liked man.

He said the newspaper – which had agreed to pay the damages and Sir Michael’s legal costs – now accepted the allegations were ‘entirely false’.