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Laurence Sydney Yoxall
by Hay Wrightson Ltdbromide print, circa 1960sNPG x181575
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9 August 2017, 17:35
Laurie Yoxall was born in 1901. He founded an instrument-making company, under his own name, in the late 1920s which later merged with the US Foxboro company to form Foxboro-Yoxall. The company (based in Reigate and Redhill) was a pioneer in instrument electronics and process control equipment, with a number of important patents, and the company was an important supplier during WW2. By all accounts, Laurie was a sensitive and much admired boss. Foxboro-Yoxall went into a steep decline after his death, and was eventually acquired by Siebe plc (now Invensys).
He was appointed CBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours of 1971, for services to export. Although extremely wealthy, he was a man of simple tastes whose only indulgence was luxury cars; he commissioned a new Rolls-Royce coupé every 2 years, which was then sent to Hoopers to be painted in his particular shade of light blue. He and his wife, Rene (née Cocking), had one daughter (Sheila). They lived in a fine house with extensive gardens outside Kingston-upon-Thames. Always full of life and enthusiasm, he was tall with a mischievous sense of humour. A keen sportsman throughout his life, he died quite suddenly in March 1976, aged 74.
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