Famous People Who Died

Kingstonian

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Peter Corby 96.

I think his trouser press was more famous than him :-

Peter Corby, inventor of the famous electric trouser press that became a fixture in hotel rooms across the globe – obituary​

Over the years the Corby trouser press became part of British culture, and the target of lighthearted satire

ByTelegraph Obituaries20 August 2021 • 8:44pm
Peter Corby: a keen sailor, and the navigational skills he had acquired in the RAF making him fast with a sextant

Peter Corby: a keen sailor, and the navigational skills he had acquired in the RAF making him fast with a sextant
Peter Corby, who has died aged 97, was the inventor of the eponymous electric trouser press, a gadget which was once affectionately described in The Daily Telegraph as “faintly redolent of three-star hotels along with shortbread and coffee creamer”.
Peter’s father John began making what were originally called valet stands in Windsor in 1930; his first customer was one Austin Reed. It was Peter, however, who in the early 1960s patented the idea of including an electrical heating pad in the design, with the aim of “providing a press which will press a pair of trousers more quickly and will produce a better appearance of the trousers than known presses”.
At the time they were launched, the electric presses, equipped with jacket hanger and a tray for pocket change, were seen as cutting-edge and aspirational, company ads promising “no more baggy knees or wrinkles” and adding that the device was “perfect for women’s slacks too”.
Peter Corby: a chance meeting with a Concorde aeronautical engineer inspired the technology of the trouser press’s electrical heating pad

Corby in his RAF days: later a chance meeting with a Concorde aeronautical engineer inspired the technology of the trouser press’s electrical heating pad
Over the years the trouser press, with its association with travelling salesmen, became something of a target of satirists. When, during the expenses scandal of 2009, the Lib Dem Chris Huhne was among several MPs reported to have claimed £119 in parliamentary expenses for Corby trouser presses (Huhne agreed to pay the money back to “avoid controversy”), he admitted that the claim was “a bit Alan Partridge”.
This was, no doubt, a reference to an episode of I’m Alan Partridge in which the broadcaster dismantles a trouser press when bored in his room at the Linton Travel Tavern, with its views of the A11 and “all you can fit on a plate” breakfasts.
Yet the trouser press is a great unsung British success story. In 1977 Corby sold the business to what is now Jourdan plc and ownership has continued to change over the years. Models of the Corby trouser press continue to sell well in some 60 countries and it remains one of the few gadgets to be made entirely in Britain.
The device gained an indelible place in British culture; in 2000 for Telegraph Weekend Jane Furnival tried cooking two whole plaice in one.
Cooking plaice in a Corby trouser press: a Telegraph Weekend feature from circa 2000

Cooking plaice in a Corby trouser press: a Telegraph Weekend feature from circa 2000
Peter John Siddons Corby was born at Leamington Spa on July 8 1924, the youngest son of John Siddons Corby and Helen, née Ratray. His middle name derived from a great-great-great grandfather, William Siddons, whose wife was the famous 18th century tragedienne Mrs (Sarah) Siddons.
From Taplow Grammar School, Peter enlisted in the RAFVR in September 1943 and was mobilised in February 1944. Trained as a flight engineer, he joined 78 Squadron in the final weeks of the European war to fly in the Halifax bomber. The squadron flew its final bombing operation on April 25 1945 before being transferred to Transport Command.
Placeholder image for youtube video: DZZFiGBX2CA

In August, Corby began a series of ground appointments at various Schools of Technical Training and Maintenance Units before returning to flying duties in early 1948 when he converted to the Lincoln bomber and joined 15 Squadron. His time with the squadron included a detachment to the Canal Zone.
After the war he joined his father (who was ill and died in 1955) in the family business. A chance meeting with the Concorde aeronautical engineer who had solved the problem of how to prevent the nose cone from freezing inspired the electrical heating pad which transformed the effectiveness of the trouser press.
The advertisements often made humorous play with gender stereotypes

The advertising often made humorous play with gender stereotypes
In the early 1970s Corby started a leasing arrangement with hotels and in 1977 sold the whole trouser press business to the Mary Quant holding company Thomas Jourdan.
The firm energetically promoted the press for use at home, not just in the hospitality industry, with tongue-in-cheek advertising that played on the gender stereotypes of the era. “Even in our liberated times few husbands know how to press trousers properly,” ran one newspaper ad, “which is why you should buy him a Corby electrically heated press… so easy to operate that men manage at first try.”
Standalone models came with coat hanger and a tray for pocket change and keys: an ad from circa 2002

Standalone models come with coat hanger and a tray for pocket change and keys: an ad from circa 2002
Peter Corby held non-executive directorships in a number of other companies and, from 1974, was a name at Lloyd’s, but he lost much of his fortune during the crisis of the early 1990s.
He was a keen sailor and made several Atlantic crossings in the 1970s, the navigational skills he had acquired in the RAF making him exceptionally fast and accurate with a sextant.
In 1980 he retired to the Isle of Wight, where his house was always full of inventions and experimental gadgets, including various tie press machines; a train set which lowered from the garage roof on an electric motor with a table tennis lid on it; a dumb waiter from the kitchen to the first floor; and a neat toy storage trolley with stacking compartmentalised drawers for Lego and Meccano.
Before the trouser press coat-hangers were made from plastic, Corby set up a small workshop in Windsor paying pensioners to carve them out of solid wood with a spokeshave.
He married, first, in 1950 (dissolved 1959), Gail Clifford-Marshall, and secondly, in 1960, Ines Mandow. She survives him with their son and two sons from his first marriage.
Peter Corby, born July 8 1924, died August 5 2021
 

Pimpernel Smith

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Not stated yet. But he was treated for cancer of the throat in 2004.
His recent operation is said to be a heart one.

He certainly wasn't overweight. But I suspect he had been a smoker from his voice.

Nevertheless, all that touring and hanging around at airports takes it's toll:



One we missed yesterday, is Brian Travers from UB40:


Knew that one was coming, allegedly a key player in the so called ''Dark Side'' of the UB40 break-up.
 

Pimpernel Smith

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Jan Libourel

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I was surprised that Asner was "only" 91 years old. When he was more in the public eye, I thought he was a good deal more than 12 years my senior. I know I said the same thing about Ross Perot a while back in this thread. When I saw in the paper this morning that he had expired, my first reaction was, "Christ! How old was he--106?" I don't think I ever saw a TV show that he appeared in, but I found his political activism annoying.
 

Rambo

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Susanna Hoffs, lead singer of The Bangles, dead at 62

my bad it was a hoax
 
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formby002

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I checked when he first posted it. I kept refreshing her news page.

Nada.

Rambo > Biden
She'd posted a tweet 1hr before Rambo 'announced' her death!

Puts me in mind of Bob Hope and George Burns who used to enjoy reading their own obituaries. I think they had a bet who'd croak first.
 
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