Farewell to much-loved fencer John


FRIENDS and fam­ily have paid trib­ute to a dad ‘who would do any­thing for any­body’.

John John­son, 69, a well-known lo­cal businessman, died on Novem­ber 21 from com­pli­ca­tions fol­low­ing a heart at­tack while he and his wife were on hol­i­day in Scot­land.

John who lived with his wife, Susan, daugh­ter Ge­orgina and her hus­band, Dan, on Bridge Green in Prest­bury, was the founder of Stock­port Fenc­ing.

Ge­orgina, 26, said: “Even at school all my dad wanted to do was to get out and earn money. He was in­cred­i­bly de­ter­mined and hard work­ing.

“And when he got his busi­ness he took on peo­ple who’d been expelled from school; he be­lieved in giv­ing ev­ery­one a chance in life.”

She added: “Three of the boys he took on at the age of 15 are still work­ing for him 15 years later; one [em­ployee] texted his phone af­ter he died and said my dad had done more for him than his own dad had.”

The grand­fa­ther-ofthree was also a great doglover and his fam­ily al­ways had plenty of four-legged friends around them grow­ing up.

Ge­orgina said: “It’s funny, some peo­ple found my dad a bit scary as he was quite big and a mas­sive char­ac­ter, but ev­ery­one loved him. He al­ways said what he thought and took the mickey out of ev­ery­one; my mum said she’d never apol­o­gised for some­one so much!”

Born in Withing­ton, he worked as an en­gi­neer in Manch­ester be­fore set­ting up his own com­pany.

Hav­ing worked six days a week for years, John and Susan be­gan to spend more time at their house in Jalon, in Spain.

They would also reg­u­larly visit their grand­chil­dren in Aberdeen.

Ge­orgina said: “My dad has al­ways said ‘Life’s for liv­ing’.

“He was a very good man.”

Fam­ily friend Denise Rankin also paid trib­ute to her next-door neigh­bour. She said: “He was well known in the vil­lage and had a heart of gold.

“He qui­etly sup­ported friends in need and took on staff in his com­pany who might oth­er­wise have ex­pe­ri­enced dif­fi­cul­ties get­ting work else­where.”

Around 220 peo­ple at­tended John’s fu­neral at St Peter’s Church in Prest­bury on De­cem­ber 17 to pay their re­spects.

John leaves wife Susan, their four chil­dren, Ge­off, Greg, Ge­orgina and James, and three grand­chil­dren Michael, Helena and Euan.

●» John John­son.

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