The death has been announced of Richard (Rick) Morel, a well-known personality of the bathroom industry.
Morel, who died after a long illness, was the owner of CMA, a long-standing bathroom agency. Over the years he had been connected with many of the leading brands in the industry. Instantly recognisable as a larger than life character (quite literally), he will be remembered by his friends for his humour and ability to share stories when meeting up at exhibitions and events, as much as for his outstanding industry connections and knowledge.
He joined his father in 1985 as an agent for Gainsborough Showers, Aqualona (bathroom accessories) and Ariston steel baths, where he gained the nickname Rick the Bath.
Within five years the business had grown sufficiently that he needed help and subsequently was joined by Richard Moffatt. At this point CMA also ran a team of 4 merchandisers calling on the large sheds and DIY stores on a weekly basis taking orders.
Morel’s heart, however, was always in top-end showroom products. He loved this side of the business, selling in the West End, where he did most of his work and made many great friends. He was the first agent for Salamander Pumps, a company that he still represented up until two years ago.
The list of companies he worked for, during his 42 years as an agent, reads like a ´who´s who’ of the bathroom industry, and includes: Salamander Engineering, Midland Stom, Amptec, Trianco, PH Pool, Koralle, Dornbracht, and Crosswater.
Italian manufacturers in particular appreciated Morel´s skills, effectiveness and reliability, and subsequently, over the course of the last 15 years, he became a niche, go-to agent for many Italian brands including: Agape, Fantini, Tubes Radiators and Karasan.
Richard Moffat commented, “Having worked so closely with Rick for more than 30 years, life will never be quite the same again. I learnt so much and shared so many experiences both in the UK and abroad. My thoughts and sympathies go to Rick´s bereaved wife Jackie and children at this sad time.”
Industry friend Rob Nicholls, Chairman of PR consultancy Publicity Engineers, said: “Rick was a one-off, a totally unique character, remembered by many as a bon-viveur, rugby player and astute businessman. Those a little closer to him though, will remember him for being a loving dedicated family man, with great faith and amazing fortitude which he demonstrated over and over again during his last few years. He will be a huge loss.”