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Heartfelt tributes recall her ‘grit and warmth’


Hilary Devey received a CBE for Transport Industry and Charities at Windsor Castle in 2013. (Photo by Steve Parsons – WPA Pool/Getty)

Dragon’s Den stars have paid heartfelt tribute to former businesswoman Hilary Devey following her death aged 65.

The Bolton-born entrepreneur was praised for bringing ‘grit and warmth’ into the Den, which gives budding entrepreneurs investment into their fledgling ideas.

Devey, who made her millions as CEO and Chairman of freight distribution firm Pall-Ex Group, joined the popular BBC series in 2011 and stayed until later the following year, before singing a contract to present a programme on Channel 4.

She assed away at her Morocco home aged 65 following a long illness, with former co-Dragon Deborah Meaden among those to pay tribute.

She took to Twitter saying Devey “was unique in every way and brought grit and warmth with her into the Den”, while telecoms giant Peter Jones called her “an inspiring woman and it was great to spend time with her on Dragons’ Den.”

James Caan, who Devey replaced in the Den called her a “truly an inspirational entrepreneur and business woman”, while one of the longest-serving Dragons, Theo Paphitis said “she left us all with some fantastic memories.

The BBC Dragons Den Twitter account also paid respects, saying she “will always hold a unique place in the hearts of our production team.

“Her straight-talking approach made her a firm favourite with viewers”.

Host Evan Davis said her unusually direct approach “was quite different to anything we’d encountered and audiences loved it. She’ll be long remembered.”



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