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Full list of The Body Shop stores facing closure as beauty brand shuts half its UK stores – is YOUR local branch affected?


Founder Dame Anita Roddick pictured in 1984

Founder Dame Anita Roddick pictured in 1984

Founded in 1976, The Body Shop was one of the first cosmetics companies to prohibit the use of ingredients tested on animals and to promote fair trade with developing countries.

This was in large part to its founder, Dame Anita Roddick, who was a human rights activist and environmental campaigner.

She was an avid campaigner for environmental and social issues, including involvement with Greenpeace and The Big Issue.

In 1990, she founded a charity called Children on the Edge, which helped disadvantaged children in Eastern Europe, Africa and Asia.

She founded The Body shop to earn an income for her and her two daughters while her husband was away in South America. Upon her husband’s return, he joined the business.

By 2004, The Body Shop has 1980 stores, more than 77 million customers and was voted the second most-trusted brand in the UK – ad the 28th top brand in the world.

But that same year, Roddick was diagnosed with liver cirrhosis due to hepatitis C. She didn’t reveal this until 2007. 

She was an avid campaigner for environmental and social issues, including involvement with Greenpeace and The Big Issue

She was an avid campaigner for environmental and social issues, including involvement with Greenpeace and The Big Issue

She announced it by saying: ‘I have hepatitis C. It’s a bit of a bummer, but you groan and move on.’

Subsequently she promoted the work of the Hepatitis C Trust and raised awareness for the disease.

Roddick was said to believe she became infected with Hepatitis following a blood transfusion after the birth of her younger daughter. This was twenty years before the UK screened blood donors for the disease.

She tragically died of an acute brain haemorrhage in September 2007. Earlier, she had sworn to leave her fortune to charities rather than her families and friends – a promise she remained true to.

The businesswoman was always adamant she had no intention of ‘dying rich’ and her Will revealed she had given away her entire £15million fortune to charity before she died.

When she died, the gross value of her estate was £665,747 which was swallowed up by inheritance tax, leaving her net worth at nil.

She had previously described leaving money to your family as ‘obscene’ and cut her daughters Sam and Justine out of her will in 2005, which Sam called a ‘relief’. 



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