Kiddicare founder Neville’s now a running man

Practising on the treadmill: Neville Wright. Picture: Georgi Mabee/Peterborough ET
Practising on the treadmill: Neville Wright. Picture: Georgi Mabee/Peterborough ET
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AN ENTERPRISING Peterborough man who has just sold the family business to a retail giant for £70 million is now planning his next money-making venture.

Neville Wright (60) founded the baby equipment retailer Kiddicare with his wife Marilyn in 1974 in a small house in Bourges Boulevard.

Since then the business, including the expertise behind its website, has mushroomed in size and the family has just completed its sale to food giant Morrisons.

And although Kiddicare will still be controlled by his family, Mr Wright is planning to step back from the firm.

But he does not plan to put his feet up.

Indeed, his next enterprise will involve putting his best foot forward. For Mr Wright, who is Peterborough born and bred, intends to run for up to 15 milies in every major city in the UK.

And he will be running for charity.

His challenge is a tribute to the surgeons whose expertise kept him out of a wheelchair 17 years ago when he developed a serious problem with his spine.

His fitness gradually improved over the following decade but it was only when he witnessed his daughter, Joanne, complete a gruelling Ironman triathalon that he was inspired to take up running.

During the course of 15 hours, she swam 2.4 miles, cycled 112 miles and ran 26.2 mile run.

He has since shed a couple of stones and plans to run in every large city in the county and more beyond.

Mr Wright said: “In the last year I’ve run in London, Barcelona, Vancouver, Brussels and Paris.

“It’s a great excuse to visit these places, stay in a nice hotel with friends and go out for a run. It’s a goal within a goal.

“I go out on my own and run about 10 to 15 miles, checking the best route with locals before I go.

“It’s fantastic to run, especially when I think I could have been in a wheelchair.”

He added: “I would like to run a London marathon – it would be quite an achievement to start running marathons at my age.

“There are lots of charities out there that I would love to help, such as children’s charities and Macmillan. It’s going to be a good life.

“I have also been asked to do some public speaking to pass on some expertise about running a family business, and to help them not make the mistakes I’ve made!”

Although, Mr Wright is pleased with the Morrisons deal, he said that stepping down was a terribly sad day.

He said: “When it came to the crunch it was awful. It was a terrible day

“Although it’s nice to see the business progress it is very sad not to be at the heart of things.”