Dalton Philips packs up in York

The Wicklow man and ex-WM Morrisons boss has put his 18th-century townhouse on the market for £1.65m

Here’s another instalment in our series of snoops inside the for-sale houses of Irish business glitterati.

Dalton Philips, the retailer who this week left British grocer WM Morrisons, has stuck his listed 250-year-old, Grade II-listed townhouse in York on the market for £1.65 million (€2.23 million), 20 per cent more than he paid for it.

As a fellow Wicklow man, Philips clearly possesses an abundance of the exquisite taste that comes naturally to woolly backs. Well, most of them . . .

With its five bedrooms, gym, wine cellar and stunning view of York Minster, the house has all the bells and whistles one would expect for the abode of the chief executive of a venerable listed retailer.


The selling agents also muse that “the house was clearly constructed for an owner of note” because it stands taller than other houses in its terrace. No word on whether its original Georgian-era owner built an extra-wide doorway to get his swelled head inside.

Former Brown Thomas boss Philips, who has said he is returning to Ireland with his family, was sacked by Morrisons.

He was given the bullet in January after its slide in recent years was compounded by a 3.1 per cent dip in sales over Christmas. He had agreed to stay on until its next quarterly results in March, but a week ago he left the business, which has been squeezed relentlessly by Aldi and Lidl.

His dismissal came as no surprise, but many believe Philips had it tough from the start because Morrisons was already in a discounter-driven loop when he took over in 2010.

Where might he end up back in Ireland, one wonders? Clerys, if it changes hands? Or perhaps Arnotts, if Galen Weston's consortium gains control?