Pembroke: Harvey-Jones goes gladly back to school

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The Independent Online
SIR JOHN HARVEY-JONES, the industrialist turned media star, will fulfil a lifetime ambition today, by helping to demolish Tormore, his old boarding School in Deal, Kent. 'It's something I always wanted to do when I was there, and now I'm going to take a jack-hammer to it. I hated the place. Now it's gone bust,' he beamed.

The demolition will be televised as part of Troubleshooter Three, the next instalment of the former ICI chairman's management guru series. Scheduled for screening in a year's time, the series is a record of Sir John's life with liberal sprinklings of the great man's views on, well, almost everything.

The wild-tied Sir John has just returned from India, where he spent the first six years of his life before being packed off to the dreaded Tormore. The Indian episode will be interspersed with visits to Indian companies. The second programme, kicking off with the school demolition, will encompass his views on education.

THERE WAS HISTORY in the air at the Park Lane Hotel in London yesterday where Ryman, the stationer, was celebrating its centenary (guest of honour: Sir John Harvey-Jones).

Desmond Ryman, grandson of founder Henry Ryman (above), was the only family member on hand, as the Rymans sold out in 1971. But Mr Ryman's two sons are keeping the name in the trade with the old Ryman office furniture factory near High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, and a shareholding in Minty, the plush furnishings company.

No regrets about selling the family silver? 'Not at all,' says Desmond Ryman. 'I still go into my local Ryman and I think grandfather would be very proud.'

(Photograph omitted)

TRAVELLERS with enough money to buy the luxurious trinkets purveyed by the upmarket jewellers Mappin & Webb, would be better off making the trek to Terminal 3 at Heathrow.

Naim Attallah, chief executive of Asprey, the chain's owner, reveals that this is where the bargains are. The sharper bargaining powers of those passing through the terminal - a large proportion of whom come from Asia, where haggling is normal - means that they pay about 2.5 per cent less than shoppers in the Mappin & Webb outlet in Terminal 4, dominated by European travellers.

Not that Mappin & Webb does anything as vulgar as discounting. It is more a case of giving the store manager that extra bit of discretion.

IS ANDREW THOMAS, chairman and chief executive of Greenalls, about to stop flying the blue flag and hoist up the red one?

As a director of Manchester City, he must be a touch embarrassed about next year's calendar produced by De Vere Hotels, owned by Greenalls. The front cover, with its picture of a beaming Alex Ferguson, manager of Manchester United, is enough to make the most ardent City fan choke. Turn to the pages for March and April and there is Mr Ferguson again, cuddling the Carling Premier League trophy.

An unfortunate own goal by Greenalls, which also owns shares in City.

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