Canadian folk singer Loreena McKennitt has succeeded in her U.K. court battle to protect her privacy.

London's Appeal Court today (Dec. 14) upheld a High Court ruling last December in which judge Mr Justice Eady issued an order preventing disclosure of details of the singer/songwriter's private life in the book "Travels With Loreena McKennitt," written by former friend Niema Ash. Ash later challenged the court order.

The Appeal judges today praised Eady for the way he had handled the case and ruled that his decision to impose a "gag" on Ash had been the correct one.

"I would dismiss the appeal," Lord Justice Buxton said today. "In so doing I would pay tribute to the judgment of Mr Justice Eady and to his handling of the case."

Buxton added, "This cannot have been an easy case but the judge succeeded in isolating the essential elements and producing a judgment that is of the greatest help in understanding the case without at the same time releasing into the public domain any of the matter that he rightly held should not be there."

When the case was heard last month, lawyers for Ash and her publishers Purple Inc Press Ltd claimed that the order struck a "triple whammy" against freedom of expression.

David Price, representing Ash and Purple Inc., had told the Appeal judges that the importance of the case went beyond those involved.

"There is a perception that the law relating to breach of confidence and misuse of private information is in a state of some uncertainty," Price had said. "This uncertainty is undesirable. It has a chilling effect on freedom of expression."