Harold Charles Gilbert [Harley] Drayton (1901–1966), financier, was born on 19 November 1901 at Streatham (the family lived at 68 Sunnyhill Road), the elder of two sons of Bob Drayton and his wife, Annie Keep. His father, who came from Lincolnshire, was employed by the London county council as a gardener. His mother died when the boys were still very young. He attended Eardley School in Streatham
In the 1945 general election Drayton stood as Liberal candidate for Bury St Edmunds.
Drayton had many business interests. He was chairman of Mitchell Cotts, which led to journeys all over Africa. He was chairman of United Newspapers and was largely responsible for building up the group because of his ability to make acquisitions. He was a director of the Midland Bank and of Eagle Star Insurance.
He served his term as chairman of the Association of Investment Trusts and was treasurer of the Institute of Directors on its resuscitation in 1946.
He died ay home 7 April 1966 at 20 Kensington Palace Gardens leaving an estate of over £2m
Picture of Harold Drayton (far right) with Billy Butlin and Sir Tom O'Brien (Secretary of the National Association of Theatrical and Kine Employees) in the Norwood News 20 October 1961 at Conyers Road, Streatham and the opening of a youth Centre funded by the Variety Club of GB
Image © Trinity Mirror. Image created courtesy of THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD.