De Savary disinherits his daughters

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The Independent Online
Peter de Savary, the property developer, has announced that he does not intend to leave his pounds 24m fortune to his five children when he dies.

The self-made multi-millionaire says he finds the sight of upper-class children squandering inheritances they do not appreciate "shameful".

"The girls must achieve in their own lives whatever they can achieve," Mr de Savary said of his five daughters. "They will not be given the responsibility and the awesome task of trying to preserve or augment or carry on any of my efforts."

His eldest daughter, Lisa de Savary, 28, yesterday applauded her father's decision. "I think it's a good thing because you do see lots of people with trust funds who don't have the impetus to get off their backsides and do something."

Miss de Savary, who works in public relations, added: "At the end of the day achieving something by yourself and off your own back is far more satisfying than sitting back and living off someone else's money."

Besides Lisa, Mr de Savary has four other daughters: Nicola, 23, Tara, 10, Amber, nine, and Savannah, five. Nicola, a medical student at King's College London, teaches English as a foreign language in her holidays. Lisa said: "She got a TEFL qualification so that's what she's doing in her summer holidays."

Mr de Savary, the son of a French-born Essex farmer, tells a forthcoming ITV series on the British class system: "I have inherited nothing; I have won nothing. I have had to create whatever I have created from nothing and I believe in the words of Andrew Carnegie, which is to die rich is to die disgraced. So I'm not leaving castles and fortunes to my children."

He was kicked out of Charterhouse when he was 16 and by the age of 34 he was a multi-millionaire. Listed as the joint-733rd richest man in Britain, he once owned John O'Groats and Land's End and now runs the Skibo Castle hotel and golf course in Scotland.

Miss de Savary emphasised that her father was a "very generous" man. "Of course," she said. "He's put us all through good schools and universities ... He's always there to help if we are in an impossible situation ... Whatever he said in the TV programme I don't think it will come across as: `I don't give my children a penny.' All he's really saying is he doesn't believe in giving children trust funds." Clare Garner