Paul Raymond was born in Liverpool. During the Second World War, he deserted from National Service and gravitated to Soho, where he earned a living as a kerbside spiv. He later became a stage mind-reader and then a producer of touring variety shows, invariably featuring decorously posed nudes. In 1958, he opened the Raymond Revuebar, the stylish Soho cabaret and strip club that attracted everyone from Frank Sinatra to The Beatles, who used it as a location for part of the Magical Mystery Tour.
Soon dubbed the 'King of Soho', Raymond's womanising and nightclubbing lifestyle made him one of Britain's most famous personalities. With the profits from the Revuebar, he published a soft porn publishing empire and invested in huge tracts of Soho property, saving this historic area of London from redevelopement in the process.
Breaking news: Tim Arnold will be joining this capsule with a special live performance to launch his new single, King of Soho.
PAUL WILLETTS is the author of four London-related works of non-fiction including 'Fear and Loathing in Fitzovia'. His biography "Members only: The Life and Times of Paul Raymond" was adapted into the Michael Winterbottom movie 'The Look of Love' starring Steve Coogan. His forthcoming book, Rendezvous at the Russian Tea Rooms, portrays a real-life wartime espionage story, involving a Russian fashion designer, a young American womaniser and an eccentric MI5 officer.