December 20, 2011.
DISASTROUS FOR STOKE-ON-TRENT, AND GROSSLY UNFAIR THAT WEDGWOOD COLLECTION CAN BE SOLD OFF – I MAY BUY, SAYS CAUDWELL.
Commenting on the High Court's ruling that the historic Wedgwood pottery collection can be sold to help pay off a £134 million pension fund deficit, John Caudwell said:
“The first thing that strikes me is just how grossly unfair it is that a law designed to protect people in totally different circumstances is causing such vast worry and uncertainty amongst those who are completely blameless for a debt that may result in an important collection – and a big piece of Potteries heritage – being broken up.
“I passionately believe that the collection should remain intact and in place, and available for public viewing.
“If the Trustees don’t find any other way of solving the issue, then I will attempt to buy the entire collection and keep it n situ for the foreseeable future, and continue with public access.
“This would be subject, of course, to the outcome of any discussions with Administrators, and input of the Trustees.
“It is vital that such an important piece of history and heritage remains in the Potteries.”
In 2006, John Caudwell sold his 10,000-employee mobile phone business, which included Phones 4u, for £1.5bn. John now concentrates on charitable and philanthropic work including Caudwell Children @caudwellkids.