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Sudden death of shopping centre founder

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Sir Charles Marcus Mander, who famously founded Wolverhampton's biggest shopping complex the Mander Centre, has died suddenly at the age of 84.

The businessman revolutionised Wolverhampton's then town centre in the 1960s and 70s and passed away last Wednesday in Newport, the Isle of Wight, it emerged today.

A director of Mander Brothers, he was one of the city's most famous industrialists, also creating the village of Perton on his Staffordshire farm lands.

Eton-educated Sir Charles was born near Tong in the early 1920s and grew up in the Swiss Alps.

In 1946 he joined the family firm of Mander Brothers, the paint, varnish and printing ink manufacturers, established by his family in 1773.

He was soon the director in charge of its 57 shops and branches.

He later sold off the family home, The Mount at Tettenhall Wood, which became the Mount Hotel.

Sir Charles remained in the area until 1959 before moving his estate to Gloucestershire.

He was the High Sheriff of Staffordshire in 1963 and a councillor and was proud to be the oldest male Mander to have lived since records began in 1290.

A colourful character, he was vilified in the Press as "the ogre of Wolverhampton" for his sheer determination to develop the area. His cause of death is not yet known.

He leaves a wife of 60 years, Dolores, a daughter and two sons, 10 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.

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