Derek went on to Moseley Grammar School, as did the likes of Professor Carl Chinn and Jasper Carrott (Bob Davis), both of whom have also played a sizeable part in my life.
He lost his father at the age of 13 and had to leave school at the legal minimum of 15 to provide for his mother and siblings. After being successful in Birmingham Derek had been living in the USA for over 20 years and was a hugely successful businessman at Harsco as well as being a highly charitable man. He received his OBE (for charitable work) in 2008.
It had been agreed for me to visit him in the USA in 2015 for the purpose of writing his biography, but he had contracted a severe cancer and was not well enough for the arrangement to take place.
One of his stated pieces of wisdom was this: