TOM LEONARD: The master of design with a very untidy love life

He transformed Britain’s sense of style, his visionary influence extending not only into our homes but also into our shops and restaurants.

Sir Terence Conran, who has died aged 88, became a byword for good taste — a visionary and business genius in whose emporia, from Habitat to The Conran Shop, Britain’s middle class first dipped a tentative toe into the heady waters of ‘contemporary design’.

The cognoscenti sneered that his designs weren’t particularly original but Conran knew how to sell an idea and make it affordable.

That perfectionist mission to brighten up drab postwar Britain started at London’s Central School of Art and Design, where he studied textiles. He was so precociously talented as a boy that, according to a family friend, he was given the largest bedroom while his parents slept in one of the two smaller ones

The British had barely slept under a duvet, cooked with

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