A childhood illness meant that John Bloor, the founder of Bloor Holdings, only spent six months at school between the ages of 12 and 15. But, after studying at night school, he set himself up as a self-employed plasterer at 15, founded a company and built his first house a year later. In 1983 Bloor rescued Triumph motorcycles from the liquidators. The marque, which now produces 30,000 bikes a year and has dealerships in the US, reported sales of £126m in 2001. His Staffordshire-based housebuilding company generates the majority of Bloor Holdings’ sales, which totalled £395m in 2001, when it employed a total of 1,420 people.
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