The Christmas lights are on, you’ve eaten tomorrow’s chocolate from the advent calendar and as each day passes, commentary from David Attenborough seems more and more appropriate to describe the scenes in London’s West End.
While we are enjoying all the High Street savings of Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Small-Business Saturday, for the individuals leading the retail sector Christmas means three things: spending, spending and even more spending. A good Christmas period can impact upon the fortunes of all, for better or worse, but none more than the many names that line our high streets and fill our shopping centres.
Retail is difficult to get right, but those that have done it, have created benefits for all, and as a result many have received Queen’s Honours. Cast your mind back to the recent honours lists, and there are a good number of individuals whose contributions to the retail sector in the UK have been recognised with an MBE, OBE, CBE or even a knighthood.
Michael Gutman (pictures above), Managing Director of Westfield (Europe), pictured above, received an OBE for his incredible work transforming the now famous shopping centre.
In market law, Graham Wilson is recognised as one of the leading experts in the UK. His services to the Retail Markets Industry was formally recognised in 2012, when he received an OBE. Graham’s honour is a fine demonstration of a very sustained and impactful contribution to a specific industry.
The current UK intellectual property minister, Lucy Jeanne Neville-Rolfe was awarded a Damehood in 2012 for her outstanding contribution to Industry and voluntary service. Dame Neville-Rolfe has performed a wide variety of senior public and private sector roles. She worked for the Ministry of Agriculture from 1973 to 1992, before serving as Director of the Deregulation Unit in the Cabinet Office from 1995 to 1997. Before entering the Lords in 2013, she served in various roles for the retail giant, Tesco.
Meanwhile, mother-of-two, Wendy Hallet, set up a multimillion-pound fashion business from an office in her East Finchley in 1999. Wendy, a former Topshop manager, was awarded an MBE in 2013 for services to diversity in the retail sector. Hallet Retail is an umbrella firm for 100 small brands and concessions in stores such as House of Fraser, Debenhams and New Look. Aside from her main role, she has received widespread praise for her role in the Women’s Business Council.
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