At a ceremony on May 20th at Cheltenham Town Hall, John Haynes OBE was presented with the honorary degree, Master of the University by the University's Chancellor, the Right Honourable Baroness 'Betty' Boothroyd of Sandwell. The award was, in the words of the Open University Senate, "to honour John Haynes: an author, a publisher, the custodian of a unique motor vehicle collection, champion of the West Country and an iconic figure to many of us - particularly, it has to be said, to the men."
While still at school, John declared that an early hero of his was car giant William Morris - later Lord Nuffield - and indeed a faithful reproduction of the original Morris Garage forms a central feature of the Haynes International Motor Museum in Somerset. Such was his admiration of the Morris way of doing things that John chose Morris' biography Wheels to Fortune as his Senior Art Prize.
During the presentation, Baroness Boothroyd referred to a particular passage from the book: "For any man worth his salt, the desire for personal gain is not his chief reason for working. It is a desire to achieve, to be a success, to make his job worthy of his mettle and self respect." It was felt that John Haynes has more than measured up to such a worthwhile aim.
As a successful businessman, John Haynes founded J H Haynes & Co Ltd back in 1960, with the Haynes Publishing Group PLC being floated on the London Stock Market in 1979. The operation is now a truly international concern with editorial and production facilities on both sides of the Atlantic as well as in Australia. Haynes manuals are now translated into many different languages and the formula has been successfully applied to cover bicycles, computers and man himself, in the form of the best selling Man Manual, a step-by-step guide to men's health.
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Haynes Manuals is the world's leading publisher of illustrated workshop car and motorcycle manuals, as well as producing manuals on a wide range of DIY, leisure and lifestyle subjects. These will continue to include motoring and motorsport related subjects.