BRITISH designer, retailer and restaurateur Sir Terence Conran has died, his family have announced.
The businessman, credited with bringing the term “lifestyle” into the English language, introduced flat pack furniture through his Habitat stores – two decades before Ikea hit the UK.
He also credited himself with ‘revolutionising the sex life of Europe’ after bringing the Continental Quilt – now better know as the duvet – to the UK.
Sir Terence slept under one of the quilts in Sweden.
And while the bedding had been available in high-end catalogues in the UK, they were suddenly everywhere after the businessman sold them from Habitat shops.
Conran is reported to have once said his popularisation of the duvet “revolutionised the sex life of Europe”.
In a statement, relatives said the “proud patriot” had “passed away peacefully today at his Barton Court home aged 88”.
The family called the Conran Shop founder a “visionary”.
“He was a visionary who enjoyed an extraordinary life and career that revolutionised the way we live in Britain,” they said.
“A proud patriot, Sir Terence promoted the best of British design, culture and the arts around the world.
“At the heart of everything he did was a very simple belief that good design improves the quality of people’s lives.”
Sir Terence launched high-end eateries such as Le Pont de la Tour, Bibendum and Coq d’Argent, which he subsequently sold, as well as the furniture chain Habitat.
He also founded The Design Museum in London, which was hailed as “one of his proudest moments”.
In a statement released this afternoon through the museum, his family said: “Sir Terence enjoyed a remarkable life to the full and always maintained that his work never felt like a job – everything he did for business, he would have done for pleasure.
“In his private life he was adored by his family and friends and we will miss him dearly.
“It gives us great comfort to know that many of you will mourn with us, but we ask that you celebrate Terence’s extraordinary legacy and contribution to the country he loved so dearly.”