Self-made multi-millionaire Cecil Duckworth arrived in Worcester in the 1950s with little more than two ideas for starting his own business. The first was a self-service petrol pump, but the oil companies told him to go away and come back later: 'You're ten years ahead of your time' they said. Cecil couldn't wait and went ahead with his second project, an oil-fired combi-boiler for central heating systems, still something of a novelty then. Despite many setbacks, he built up a successful business, Worcester Heat Systems, that was bought by Bosch in 1992. Cecil then turned his attention to Worcester and the city's rugby club in particular, taking the Warriors into the Premiership in 2004 when he was awarded the OBE for services to rugby and the community and made a Freeman of the City of Worcester in 2008. In his autobiography, Worcester Warrior, Cecil Duckworth tells the story of the many setbacks he encountered in the process of building up his business in Worcester, including the 1973 oil crisis and a fire that destroyed the factory in 1983. He also reveals how some of the leading rugby clubs attempted to prevent Worcester's rugby club from gaining promotion to the Premiership.
Self-made millionaire Cecil Duckworth was born in Macclesfield in 1937 but has lived in Worcester for over 50 years. In 1962 he started his own engineering company, Worcester Heat Systems, manufacturing domestic central heating boilers. In 1970 he introduced the first combi boiler which resulted in the company's rapid expansion to market leader. Going public in 1986, he then sold the company to Bosch in 1996. Since retiring he has taken Worcester Rugby Club into the Premiership, set up the Duckworth Worcestershire Trust with a view to making the City of Worcester a more attractive, cleaner and safer place to live, and led a number of other local community based projects. He was awarded the OBE in 2005 for services to sport and the environment in Worcestershire and made a Freeman of the City of Worcester in 2008.
Foreword Chapter 1 Origins 2 Finding My Feet 3 The Firefly 4 Diglis Basin 5 The New Idea 6 Oil Crisis 7 Playing Poker 8 Union Power 9 New Horizons 10 Ashes 11 Phoenix 12 Securing The Future 13 Life With Bosch 14 Rugby 15 Whistleblower 16 In The Scrum 17 Relegation 18 Looking Ahead Acknowledgements Index