Rich List: Sofa tycoon Lord Kirkham sitting pretty

Billionaire: Lord Kirkham.
Billionaire: Lord Kirkham.

Former South Yorkshire sofa group boss Lord Kirkham has more than doubled his fortune to secure a place as one of the three richest men in Yorkshire.

According to the latest Sunday Times Rich List, the Conservative peer, who sold the DFS group for a reported £500 million last year, increased his wealth by £570 million to become one of four Yorkshire billionaires and the 67th richest man in Britain.

Topping the list and ranked 40th overall are Eddie Healey and his brother Malcolm, whose joint fortune is reckoned to total £1,500 million – up from £1,250 million in 2010.

Eddie Healey sold his stake in the Meadowhall shopping complex for £420 million in 1999.

He was also an investor in Jennic, the Sheffield-based semiconductor design expert, which develops low-power, wireless microcontrollers used in applications ranging from warehousing and distribution to security and telemedicine. Jennic was sold last year to Dutch company NXP Semiconductors for £20 million.

Terry Bramall, former chairman of the Doncaster-based Keepmoat construction group, and his family are ranked eighth in Yorkshire with a £425 million fortune – down by £25 million on last year.

Also among the 10 richest people in Yorkshire is Lawrence Tomlinson, who acquired Sheffield sports car manufacturer Ginetta in December 2005 and went on to win the GT2 Class at the Le Mans 24 Hour race in a Panoz Esparante, prepared in Sheffield the following year, breaking the stranglehold Porsche had held on the class since it was created.

The former care homes-turned- construction-and-IT-entrepreneur later moved Ginetta to near Garforth, Leeds.

Tomlinson’s £500 million fortune has increased by £100 million over the last year, according to the Sunday Times Rich List, making him the sixth wealthiest man in Yorkshire.