Sir Benjamin SladeOf the Maunsel House Estate
Sir Benjamin Julian Alfred Slade
My full name is Sir Benjamin Julian Alfred Slade but I am generally known as Sir Ben Slade. My parents were Sir Michael Nial Slade and Miss Angela Clare Rosalind Chichester, and I was born on 22nd May 1946. I am the 7th Baronet, a title which I inherited from my father in 1962.
I was educated at Millfield School in Somerset where I passed my O levels.
I went to Australia in 1967 and was a jackaroo on sheep station and then became a stockbroker and then an off-sider, building a road in Victoria. After this I went to Perth in Western Australia and sold Italian and Yugoslavian women photographs of their babies. I then worked in the Hamersley Iron Ore Mines at Dampier. I worked for George Wills & Co in Perth and then the Combined Insurance Company of America.
I then started several businesses related to marketing and returned to London in 1971 to work as a stockbroker in the City of London.
I founded Shirlstar Container Transport Limited in 1973 with £200 and built the business up into a leading container transport company. The company became part of Shirlstar (Holdings) Limited and the container fleet was sold in the late 1990s. I was a Director and the largest single shareholder of Richardson & Westgarth Plc. Richardson & Westgarth employed 2000 people and had 14 subsidiaries.
I also managed to take over Pyman Bell & Co Limited, a 140 year old timber company in the North East.
I was one of the early financiers to Prêt a Manger when they only had 10 sites and since then my interests have diversified into high technology, food retail, property investment and agricultural land.
Today I run my ancestral home, Maunsel House, set in a 2000 acre Estate in North Newton, and Woodlands Castle based near Taunton as successful wedding, events and conference venues.
Maunsel House and I have featured in a number of television programmes over the years including Laddette to Lady, Country House Cooking Contest, Kirstie’s Homemade Homes, Beeny’s Restoration Nightmare, The Guest Wing, Storage Hoarders, Holiday Home Sweet Home, Food Glorious Food, The Removal Men, Party Wright Around the World, Cash Cowboy, Salvage Hunters, You Can’t Get the Staff Storage: Flog the Lot!, Escape to the Country and more.
The Crest‘Faithful & Bold’
The Slade of Slade Hall granted arms by Edward I crest of ostrich feathers and the arms of three horses heads.