Because Leith’s was a success, I started to be invited on to other people’s boards. I was so flattered I almost always said Yes, even though I knew that the chief reason for the invitation was probably that the Chairman needed a woman on his board for appearance’s sake. So I first joined the British Railways Board, and then Safeway, Halifax, Whitbread and Woolworth. I’m still on a few, including the wonderful Belmond Hotels, which means I get to travel all over the world as we hold our board meetings in our hotels, which are some of the best in the world: the Cipriani, the Grand Hotel Europe in St Petersburg, the Mount Nelson in Cape Town, the Copacabana in Rio and the 21 Club New York.
Proudest moment? In 1990 winning Veuve Cliquot Business Woman of the Year. We’d just won the contract to do the public catering in Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens and we had a celebratory staff party to beat all staff parties in the Orangery.