Bernard Oppenheimer
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Sir Bernard Oppenheimer, 1st Baronet (13 February 1866 – 13 June 1921) was a
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South Africa
n-
British British may refer to: Peoples, culture, and language * British people The British people, or Britons, are the citizens of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ir ...

British
diamond Diamond is a Allotropes of carbon, solid form of the element carbon with its atoms arranged in a crystal structure called diamond cubic. At Standard conditions for temperature and pressure, room temperature and pressure, another solid form of ...

diamond
merchant and
philanthropist Philanthropy consists of "private initiatives, for the Public good (economics), public good, focusing on quality of life". Philanthropy contrasts with business initiatives, which are private initiatives for private good, focusing on material gain ...
.


Business and philanthropy

Oppenheimer was chairman of Pniel's Ltd, the New
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Vaal River
Diamond & Exploration Company, and Blaauwbosch Diamonds Ltd, and
managing director A chief executive officer (CEO), chief administrator officer, or just chief executive (CE), is one of a number of corporate executives A corporation is an organization—usually a group of people or a company A company, abbreviated as c ...
of Lewis & Marks Ltd of
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Holborn
. His brother, Sir Ernest Oppenheimer, was also heavily involved in the diamond industry. In July 1917, Oppenheimer established a scheme for training disabled soldiers in
diamond cutting Diamond cutting is the practice of shaping a diamond Diamond is a solid form of the element carbon with its atoms arranged in a crystal structure In crystallography Crystallography is the experimental science of determining the arrangemen ...
at
Brighton Brighton () is a constituent part of the city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia''. 2nd ...

Brighton
,
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England
. The Bernard Oppenheimer Diamond Works (National Diamond Factories Ltd) opened on Lewes Road/Coombe Road (north side) on 17 May 1918. It was mainly paid for by Oppenheimer himself and by Lewis & Marks. In 1920 it also opened branches in
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Cambridge
,
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and
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. By 1921 the works, including a second building on the opposite side of Coombe Road, employed about 2,000 men who were referred to it by the
Ministry of Labour The Ministry of Labour (''British English, UK''), or Labor (''American English, US''), also known as the Department of Labour, or Labor, is a government department responsible for setting national labour standards, labour dispute mechanisms, employm ...
. New men received six months training, during which they were paid a maintenance allowance by the government, and were then virtually guaranteed employment at a good wage. The factory had a well-equipped
clinic A clinic (or outpatient clinic or ambulatory care clinic) is a health facility in Hartford, Connecticut Hartford is the List of capitals in the United States, capital city of the U.S. state of Connecticut. It was the seat of Hartford Cou ...

clinic
to provide ongoing care for the employees, many of whom were
amputee Amputation is the removal of a limb Limb can refer to: *Limb (anatomy), an appendage of a human or animal *Limb Music, a record label *Limb (album), an album by Foetus *Limb, in astronomy, the curved edge of the apparent disk of a celestial body, ...
s or otherwise severely disabled. The business did not do well and closed in 1923, but reopened later the same year. It finally went into
receivership In law Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its environment, is described by it ...
in 1924. In 1917 he purchased Sefton Park estate, Stoke Poges, Buckinghamshire, where he lived till his death. During that period, he and his near neighbour, Walter A.Judd bought land which included Gray's Monument in
Stoke Poges Stoke Poges () is a buffer zone, green-buffered dispersed settlement, scattered village and civil parish in south-east Buckinghamshire, England. It is centred north-north-east of Slough (historically Upton-cum-Chalvey), its post town, and sout ...
, a memorial to the English poet,
Thomas Gray Thomas Gray (26 December 1716 – 30 July 1771) was an English poet, letter-writer, classical Classical may refer to: European antiquity *Classical antiquity, a period of history from roughly the 7th or 8th century B.C.E. to the 5th century ...

Thomas Gray
, so as to save it for the public. Rigby,Lionel. Stoke Poges:A Buckinghamshire Village through 1000 year(2000) Phillimore.p.67 & 112. ISBN 781860771316 In 1925 Gray's Monument and Gray's Field were handed over to the
National Trust The National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty, commonly known as the National Trust, is a charity and membership organisation for heritage conservation in England England is a Countries of the United Kingdom, cou ...

National Trust
.


Baronetcy

For his work with the disabled, Oppenheimer was created a
baronet A baronet ( or ; abbreviated Bart or Bt) or the rare female equivalent, a baronetess (, , or ; abbreviation Btss), is the holder of a baronetcy, a hereditary title awarded by the British Crown The Crown is the in all its aspects within ...

baronet
in the 1921 New Year Honours. He died suddenly six months later at the age of 55. He married Lena Straus, with whom he had six children.''Geni'', 23 May 2018


Arms


Footnotes


References

*Obituary, ''
The Times ''The Times'' is a British Newspaper#Daily, daily Newspaper#National, national newspaper based in London. It began in 1785 under the title ''The Daily Universal Register'', adopting its current name on 1 January 1788. ''The Times'' and its s ...
'', 14 June 1921


External links


Old Diamond Works, Brighton
*https://www.geni.com/people/Sir-Bernard-Oppenheimer/6000000047885619999 1866 births 1921 deaths Diamond cutting British Jews British businesspeople British philanthropists South African people of German-Jewish descent South African Jews South African businesspeople South African philanthropists Baronets in the Baronetage of the United Kingdom Oppenheimer family, Bernard British people of German-Jewish descent Diamond industry {{SouthAfrica-business-bio-stub