Jack Petchey

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Sir Jack Petchey

Born (1925-07-19) 19 July 1925 (age 93)
Plaistow, U.K.
OccupationBusinessman, philanthropist
Net worth₤550 million (2017)[1]
Spouse(s)Diane Harrison
Frances Segelman
Children1 son, 3 daughters

Sir Jack Petchey CBE (born 19 July 1925) is an English businessman and philanthropist.

Early life[edit]

He was born on 19 July 1925 in Plaistow, Essex.[1][2][3] He came from a working-class family and was brought up in the East End of London,[4] leaving school aged 13.[1]

During the Second World War, he served in the Royal Navy.[1]


Petchey started a car hire and car sales business. From his profits he invested in property and timeshare which grew into a business empire valued over half a billion pounds by 2007. Jack became known as the grandfather of timeshare, and amassed his fortune with marketing in UK and abroad. It was the resort in Albufeira, Portugal, where the real timeshare boom took place, right up to late 2000's, when the whole conglomerate of leisure businesses was sold.[5] In 1969, he was involved with property development, becoming one of the most successful businessmen in Britain.[6]

Petchey once owned Watford Football Club which he bought from Elton John in 1987.[7] He resigned as chairman in March 1994 and sold the club back to the singer.[8]


The Jack Petchey Foundation's flagship programme is its Achievement Award scheme – a reward and recognition initiative which enables schools and youth organisations to celebrate the achievements of their young people as well as receive additional funding. Almost 2,000 schools, colleges and youth organisations across London and Essex run the scheme, which contributes millions of pounds each year. Among the organisations on the scheme are sports, music and performing arts clubs, uniformed and disability groups, and youth clubs.[citation needed]

The foundation also celebrates Adult Leaders who support young people and has funding available for educational visits and for young volunteers to carry out projects both in the UK and abroad. On top of the central grant giving programmes, the Jack Petchey Foundation runs a number of partnership programmes including the Jack Petchey Speak Out Challenge, Step Into Dance, Panathlon, the London Schools Table Tennis Championships and the Anthony Nolan Register and Be a Lifesaver programme.[citation needed] The foundation was also the central funding body of the Petchey Academy and the Petchey Centre for Entrepreneurship. The Foundation also has a branch in Albufeira, Portugal, which does similar work to its British counterpart.[9]

Petchey was nominated as a Scouting In London Ambassador for the Scout Association Region for Greater London at an Adult Appreciation ceremony in 2008.[6]

As of May 2017, he is worth an estimated ₤550 million.[1]


Petchey was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 2004 and Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2011 Birthday Honours for charitable services.[10][11] He was knighted in the 2016 New Year Honours for services to young people in East London and Essex through the Jack Petchey Foundation.[12][13]

On 27 May 2010, he was given the Freedom of the Borough of Newham.[14]

He has also been made a Honorary Commodore in the Sea Cadet Corps.[15]

Personal life[edit]

Petchey was married twice. He first married Diane Harrison in 1949, they had a son, John, and three daughters, Jackie, Susan and Amanda.[1] In 2016 at the age of 90 he married a second time to Frances Segelman, a sculptor.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Higgins, Ria (May 2017). "Sir Jack Petchey". The Sunday Times Magazine.
  2. ^ "Index entry". FreeBMD. ONS. Retrieved 19 June 2014.
  3. ^ "Jack Petchey Foundation – Home" (PDF). www.jackpetcheyfoundation.org.uk. Archived from the original (PDF) on 10 May 2017. Retrieved 16 May 2017.
  4. ^ http://www.jackpetcheyfoundation.org.uk/who-is-sir-jack-petchey
  5. ^ "Shares News & Analysis". www.investorschronicle.co.uk.
  6. ^ a b Scouting In London Ambassador Archived 8 September 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ "The Business On... Jack Petchey, Businessman and philanthropist". The Independent. 4 May 2011. Retrieved 12 September 2018.
  8. ^ "Jack Petchey resigned as Watford chairman 20 years ago today". Watford Observer. 25 March 2014. Retrieved 12 September 2018.
  9. ^ JackpetcheyFoundation.eu
  10. ^ "No. 59808". The London Gazette (Supplement). 11 June 2011. p. 8.
  11. ^ "Main list of the 2011 Queen's birthday honours recipients" (PDF). BBC News UK. Retrieved 11 June 2011.
  12. ^ "No. 61450". The London Gazette (Supplement). 30 December 2015. p. N2.
  13. ^ "New Year's Honours 2016 list" (PDF). GOV.UK. 30 December 2015. Retrieved 30 December 2015.
  14. ^ "Honorary Freedoms of the Borough 2010 – Old Town Hall, Stratford, London, E15" (PDF). The London Borough of Newham. 27 May 2010. Archived from the original (PDF) on 7 March 2012. Retrieved 16 May 2017.
  15. ^ "Honorary Commadore (SCC) for Jack Petchey". Sea Cadets. Retrieved 6 March 2019.