Nottingham Rich Witness Change in Fortune

A revised rich list has revealed the considerable losses endured by Nottingham’s millionaires in the last year. Two retail juggernauts of Nottingham have been particularly badly hit. Beeston-born Sir Paul Smith, a leading British fashion designer, has seen a sharp fall in his fortune. Last year Smith’s wealth fell by £30 million, to £260 million. However, the 62-year-old has just invested £10 million in a warehouse in Nottingham and sales of his products were up 17% on the previous year. Wilkinson Hardware Stores, the Nottinghamshire-based discount store chain, is a £1.3 billion operation with 300 outlets. Tony Wilkinson, son of the founder, has seen his net worth fall by £35 million this past year, to £205 million.

Nigel Doughty, who has spent £42 million on Nottingham Forest FC over the years, runs a London private equity firm. Having made a profit of nearly £52 million in 2007, he has lost £31 million on his £150 million fortune this year.

Local businessman, Nick Foreman Hardy, who netted £60 million in 1994 from the sale of the Nottingham Evening Post, has been valued at £84 million – down £10 million from 2008. Perhaps the hardest hit has been Gary Dutton, the owner of Synseal, Nottingham’s biggest window and conservatory supplier, who is down 35% with his worth falling to £65 million.

However, compared to Britain’s richest man, Lakshmi Mittal, Nottingham’s richest seem to have fared well. Mittal’s wealth has fallen by 61%, to £10.8 billion. Similarly, Roman Abramovich has seen a 40% fall, seeing his fortune decrease to £7 billion.

Louis Hemsley


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