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Tim Martin

Kirsty Young talks to Tim Martin, founder of JD Wetherspoon.

Tim Martin is the chairman and founder of the pub company JD Wetherspoon. He opened his first pub, Martin's Free House, in 1979 in North London. Now the chain employs 37,000 people, in 891 pubs of which 54 are hotels. Travelling from his home in Devon, Tim visits at least ten of them a week taking detailed 'call notes' on the staff, the beer, the quality of the food and even the cutlery.

In 2016 he became one of the most high-profile UK business people arguing in favour in leaving the EU. He printed half a million beer mats for his pubs, making the case for Brexit.

His success in the pub industry might be in the genes. His father, initially an aerobatic pilot, later worked for Guinness, which took the family around the globe and Tim spent his childhood in both New Zealand and Northern Ireland. He trained for the law but instead chose the career of a publican.

Presenter: Kirsty Young
Producer: Cathy Drysdale.

Available now

34 minutes

Last on

Fri 8 Dec 2017 09:00

Music Played

  • Loudon Wainwright III

    Down Drinking At The Bar

    • Album III/Attempted Mustache.
    • Sony.
    • 19.
  • Van Morrison

    Cleaning Windows

    • Beautiful Vision.
    • Polydor.
    • 6.
  • The Beach Boys

    Do It Again

    • 20/20.
    • EMI.
    • 1.
  • Bob Dylan

    Girl From The North Country (feat. Johnny Cash)

    • The Legend: Family and Friends.
    • Columbia.
    • 9.
  • Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band

    Yellow Brick Road

    • The Pye International Story.
    • Sony.
    • 7.

    • Extract from Poem in October by Dylan Thomas

      Read by Richard Burton

  • Dire Straits

    Sultans Of Swing

    • Dire Straits.
    • Vertigo.
    • 6.
  • Bob Marley

    Natural Mystic

    • Natural Mystic.
    • Island.
    • 1.

    Dance to the Music of Time by Anthony Powell


    A surfboard


Role Contributor
Presenter Kirsty Young
Interviewed Guest Tim Martin
Producer Cathy Drysdale


  • Sun 3 Dec 2017 11:15
  • Fri 8 Dec 2017 09:00

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