Sir Malcolm Walker, retailer
Sir Malcolm Walker is the chairman and co-founder of the frozen food supermarket chain Iceland.
He was brought up in Grange Moor, West Yorkshire. He was just 14 when his father died, and he helped his mother run a smallholding, driving a tractor and ploughing fields. His business instinct kicked in during his teenage years, when he promoted Saturday night dances by booking bands into local church halls.
After receiving rejections from Marks & Spencer and Littlewoods, he became a trainee manager at Woolworths, and recalls that he started at the very bottom, sweeping the floors for many months before gradually winning promotions and moving round the country.
In 1970, he and Peter Hinchcliffe, a colleague from Woolworths, opened a shop in Oswestry, selling loose frozen food from chest freezers. The business soon began to take off, Malcolm and Peter were both fired by Woolworths, and Malcolm went on to build a company which now has more than 1000 stores in the UK and Ireland. Along the way, boardroom battles led to his departure in the early 2000s, but he later returned and Iceland is now back in family ownership.
Alongside his business pursuits, Malcolm has been a fundraiser for dementia charities, after his wife was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's. She died in 2021 after more than 50 years of marriage.
He was knighted in 2017, has three children, one of whom also works in the family business, and he married for the second time in August last year.
DISC ONE: Violin Concerto No. 1 in G Minor, Op. 26: II. Adagio, composed by Max Bruch, performed by Itzhak Perlman (violin) and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, conducted by Bernard Haitink
DISC TWO: Goodbye by Josef Locke
DISC THREE: Only You by The Platters
DISC FOUR: Silence is Golden by The Tremeloes
DISC FIVE: Memory composed by Andrew Lloyd Webber and performed by Elaine Paige
DISC SIX: All I Ask of You composed by Andrew Lloyd Webber and performed by Steve Barton and Sarah Brightman
DISC SEVEN: La bohème, SC 67 / Act I composed by Giacomo Puccini and performed by Luciano Pavarotti (tenor) and Mirella Freni (soprano) with the Berlin Philharmonic, conducted by Herbert von Karajan
DISC EIGHT: Quando me’n vo (“Musetta’s Waltz”) from La Bohème composed by Giacomo Puccini and performed by Natalie Walker
BOOK CHOICE: Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe
LUXURY ITEM: A cast iron cooking pot
CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Quando me’n vo (“Musetta’s Waltz”) from La Bohème composed by Giacomo Puccini and performed by Natalie Walker
Presenter Lauren Laverne
Producer Sarah Taylor