It is the caricature of John Bray, once the darling of the City and the business press for transforming Coloroll in the 1970s from an ailing maker of paper bags to a stylish home decorator. Afterwards he handed over to his protege, John Ashcroft, who proceeded to reap all the glory for Coloroll's continuing rise.
Bray had better things to do than mope about it. For instance he made pounds 1m by buying, turning round and selling Paperchase in 18 months. And he probably would have been less than human if he had not felt a slight twinge of satisfaction when Ashcroft's bubble eventually burst.
Bray came back from holiday last year rested and far from ready, at 57, to hang up his pink- framed spectacles. The result is the new shop, from the Spitting Image puppets to the purple carpets to the Italian and French rather than English clothes. They also have price-tags. Not very Jermyn Street.
Bray said that business in the first week was 'sensational', and his plan to open five shops in three years is already looking conservative. Making money is easy, when you know how . . .
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