Building tycoon Lawrie Barratt dies age 85

 

Tributes have been paid to building tycoon Sir Lawrie Barratt after died at the age of 85.

Sir Lawrie, who died at his home in Corbridge, Northumberland, founded Barratt Developments, which now employs more than 4,000 people and has 25 divisions across Britain.

Just two years ago the entrepreneur suffered a harrowing experience when, along with his wife, Lady Sheila, the couple were tied up in their home by three masked men.

The raiders, who were armed with crowbars, bound and gagged the couple before eventually making off with a hoard of expensive jewellery.

Having initially trained as an accountant, Sir Lawrie built his first home just outside Newcastle in 1958.

Mark Clare, chief executive of Barratt Developments, said: "Sir Lawrie founded the company in 1958 and established it as the largest and best-known house-builder in the country.

"He had the vision to understand how deeply rooted the desire for home ownership is within this country and he then set out to meet that aspiration by designing and building high-quality, affordable homes.

"Under his leadership, the company brought home ownership within reach of many people through innovative support for home-buyers and the high-profile way it was promoted.

"I believe that it is no exaggeration to say that there are hundreds of thousands of people in the UK today, across every walk of life, that have bought or lived in homes inspired by Sir Lawrie."

PA

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