"Roman Abramovich and Lakshmi Mittal are two names never far from the top of UK rich lists. But their wealth is small change compared with that of a little-known French immigrant who amassed the largest fortune ever seen on these shores. When he died more than 900 years ago, Alan Rufus was worth, in today's terms, Â£81billion and he owned huge swathes of the country. Alan the Red - so-called because of the colour of his hair - tops a list of the 250 wealthiest people in British history in a book called The Richest Of The Rich. Using figures from probate records and ancient documents, authors Philip Beresford and Bill Rubinstein have calculated that this sum was more than 7 per cent of the national income of the time."