During the late 1980's I spent a short period in exile a little to the east of Offa's Dyke in one of the most friendly of England's towns Ross on Wye. One of my fellow residents of the town was Sir John Harvey Jones, a great man. One could read Sir John's contributions in the posh papers in the morning extolling the glories of some of London's best restaurants and then bump into him in the evening in the local Chinese or chip shop. If one was rude enough to mention the mornings paper and suggest that he was "slumming it" he would always retort by making the point that quality and service were what was important in business be it at what is perceived as the top end or the bottom end of a market and that the local chippy offered quality and service.
In the days when industrial relations seemed to be dominated by the intransigence of the likes of John Macgregor on the one hand and Arthur Scargill on the other it was refreshing to know of a big industrial boss who appreciated the value of his workforce and whom those who worked for him acknowledged as a good boss. One of my favourite Sir John quotes is: Leadership is the priceless gift that you earn from the people who work for you. I have to earn the right to that gift and have to continuously re-earn that right.
A good man and a good example to all leaders of industry. I was very sad to hear of his passing. My sincere condolences to his family and friends. RIP.