M&S Making a Mark - Simon Marks

Achievements and impact on British retailing

Driven by a sense of duty and reponsibility, Simon made sure that M&S contributed everything possible to the war effort from 1939. Employees took on new roles as ARP wardens, staffed soup kitchens and raised funds to buy a Spitfire and an ambulance. Despite having a country house in Windsor - away from the air raids on central London, Simon and his wife Miriam moved into the centre of the city to be closer to the business and his other public duties. They lived in the Dorchester Hotel from 1941.

Simon was a very active citizen, he took on many public appointments throughout his life; from committee member on a group looking at the reorganisation of the egg and poultry industry to advising the Petroleum Warfare Department during the Second World War. As a result of his hard work he was awarded a knighthood in 1944, becoming Sir Marks, and then a peerage in 1961 as Lord Marks of Broughton.

The cuttings from St Michael News pictured right are:
These and the other articles in this resource (see Downloads links below) demonstrate the impact that Simon had on British retailing, the personal qualities that helped him succeed and list his achievements outside of M&S.

You can also download a timeline PDF showing significant dates and events in the life of Simon Marks.


Commemorating  - remembering and showing respect for something or someone
Peerage - the body of titled nobility in Britain, such as duke, marquess, earl, viscount and baron

The pages containing discussion and activity ideas suggest ways the material in this resource can be used in the classroom to stimulate discussion or for homework or extension activities.

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