Andrew Pierce is a journalist, editor, author and broadcaster, and a columnist with the Daily Mail. I met him briefly while we were protesting against MGM outside the recent Tory party conference – here (video, 31 seconds). We’re mentioned in his column in today’s paper, here.
Andrew refers to me working at ‘a Brylcreem factory’ in Maidenhead, in Theresa May’s constituency, where I’ll be standing at the 2020 general election. After graduating with a Chemistry degree from Reading University in 1979, I started employment at ‘the Brylcreem factory’ (as it was then known in Maidenhead) with Beecham Toiletries as a Graduate Trainee. The plant was the largest toiletries plant in Europe, manufacturing and packaging a wide range of products including shampoos, toothpastes, hairsprays, anti-perspirants, adhesives… and Brylcreem (about 10 tonnes per day, if memory serves me right). Brand names included Silvikrin, Vosene, Bristows, Macleans, Aquafresh (I know how they put the stripes in Aquafresh, but can’t tell you), Body Mist, Uhu…
Seven years after starting work at the plant, I was promoted to the position of Chief Buyer, with staff and an annual budget of £40 million (equivalent to over £100 million today). The ten years I spent at Beecham were the happiest of my working life, and ended when I was headhunted by Gillette.
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