Pornography tycoon Paul Raymond dies aged 82
PORN baron and property magnate Paul Raymond has died. He was 82.
Raymond, once dubbed the King of Soho, opened the only premises in the UK to stage live striptease shows in 1958. His pornographic magazines included Razzle, Men’s World and Mayfair, and he was thought to be worth £650m.
Raymond brought erotica into the mainstream. The son of a Liverpool haulage contractor, he accrued his wealth by buying up property in Soho and west London as prices dropped in the 1970s amid a police crackdown on the sex industry.
Born Geoffrey Anthony Quinn, he was raised in Glossop, Derbyshire, and left school at 15, determined to break into showbusiness.
His first break was in the form of a mind-reading act on Clacton Pier, when he changed his name.
He then became a producer, touring a variety programme, the Vaudeville Express, around the country.
Raymond got around a ruling by the Lord Chamberlain which banned movement by nudes on stage by having the topless women pose motionless.
In the late 1960s he bought the Whitehall Theatre in London’s West End where he staged farces.
His fortune waned in his later years because of competition from so-called lad’s magazines.