Tribute has been paid to a much-loved Moorlands businessman and racehorse trainer and owner. John Cresswell, of Stoneydale in Oakamoor, sadly passed away at his home on Monday, September 28, aged 85, following a short illness.
Tribute has been paid to a much-loved Moorlands businessman and racehorse trainer and owner.
John Cresswell, of Stoneydale in Oakamoor, sadly passed away at his home on Monday, September 28, aged 85, following a short illness.
Here is a tribute that has been paid to John by his family:
Born in 1935 at Moss Hall in Cheshire, John was a director of two successful engineering firms in Stoke-on-Trent.
After entering the family metalworks at 15 under his grandfather RD Cresswell, John set up Silvers Cresswell Ltd with his son Nick in 1985. Together they then purchased Glebe Engineering Ltd in 1987 and Classic Gears Ltd in 1995.
In 2015, they moved their businesses to a new purpose-built factory in Basford, Stoke-on-Trent, and John enjoyed the last five years at this location, the fruit of their endeavours. Both businesses continue to thrive in the Potteries under Nick and his son Tom, John’s eldest grandson.
It was thanks to John’s vision and leadership that the family businesses were able to adapt to the changing manufacturing landscape in Britain, surviving where so many others didn’t by carving out niches in precision engineering. This has seen them become trusted small parts suppliers to clients in a variety of fields, including Formula One racing.
Together with his wife Elizabeth, John was also a successful racehorse owner, breeder and trainer. In a sporting career that spanned more than three decades, the couple enjoyed over 100 victories on the flat and over jumps and trained, owned or bred 30 winning horses.
Highlights include breeding Prince Peccadillo, who won four races and ran in the 1985 Group Two Gimcrack Stakes at York. Itsagame, another homebred colt, was the winner of eight races throughout his career, including the Brocklesby Stakes at Doncaster.
John and Elizabeth also bred the nine-time winner Balatina and the five-furlong sprinter Stoneydale, who was named after their farm and won five races.
In the National Hunt sphere, John bred a high-class gelding called Karinga Dancer, who won seven races over both hurdles and fences, but his all-time favourite was a little chestnut mare called Dinky Dora, who he bred and trained to win two hurdle races and collect four placings.
To those who knew him, John was a true character whose charisma made him the natural centre of attention wherever he went. For all his success, he kept the common touch, and had the ability to leave everyone he spoke to with a big smile on their face.
Large in stature and personality, good-natured and an eternal optimist, he combined decent old-fashioned values with a rare twinkle and an often-silly sense of humour. This ensured that all who knew him felt great affection for him.
John was also a family man who cared deeply about his children, grandchildren and other relatives, with whom he loved to spend time during frequent family gatherings at his home. Other passions included pigeon racing, doing endless odd jobs around the farm (often enlisting his grandsons to help), reading the business pages, and the novels of Dick Francis and P. G. Wodehouse.
He is survived by Elizabeth (née Dale), his wife of 61 years; brother Richard and sister Ann; son Nick (Jani) and daughters Suzi (Alastair) and Sarah (Al); brother-in-law John and sister-in-law Ann (Brian); grandchildren Felicity, Tom, Paddy, Jack, Maddie, Tristan, Molly, Annabel, Harriet and Luca; and great-grandson Freddie.
In view of current restrictions, a small family funeral will take place on October 23.
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