Fond memories of a serial entrepreneur who launched a thriving scrap metal and skip business, have been shared as part of a touching tribute by his family. Father of seven, Harold Hartley of Draycott-in-the-Moors, died at home on Thursday, March 4, surrounded by his family.
Fond memories of a serial entrepreneur who launched a thriving scrap metal and skip business, have been shared as part of a touching tribute by his family.
Father of seven, Harold Hartley of Draycott-in-the-Moors, died at home on Thursday, March 4, surrounded by his family.
A private funeral for Harold was held on Friday (March 26) at St Margaret’s Church, Draycott.
His partner, Ann and children Susan, Wendy, John, William, Joseph, Rebecca and Benjamin paid tribute to Harold who was also a proud grandad, great grandad, brother, uncle and father-in-law.
Born in Twigg Street, Bucknall in 1933, Harold was one of eight children, part of a loving family and with a hard-working streak that was evident early on.
As a boy, Harold would run behind the coal wagon, hoping a lump would fall off for the family fire. His childhood adventures included accidentally crashing a bread van after he and a friend looked inside and let the handbrake off.
Later, Harold started breaking vehicles on the side of the road, eventually moving to Boundary where he established a yard and began his family in a railway coach with no electricity and no water.
The family eventually moved to Draycott. Harold continued to grow his businesses, buying a farm in Ipstones, a chip shop, a petrol station and a barrel organ, complete with Chichi the monkey.
Horses played a major role in Harold’s life. From providing horse-drawn wedding transport and visiting horse shows across the country, to coming home on one occasion with 100 Welsh Mountain pony foals.
Harold established a scrapyard at his New Haden yard, expanding into a skip business in 1972. The yard was a venue for further sales, along with a field at Totmonslow.
Well known at pubs across the Moorlands, Harold was also a regular visitor to events such as the Staffordshire County Show, Chatsworth Country Fair, Longnor Wakes, Pikehall Harness Racing and Ashbourne Royal Shrovetide.
With a passion for cars, Harold’s family have treasured memories of trips to Wales in a horse-box, while later in life, he would visit Dorset Steam Fair in a converted van, as well as taking holidays in a caravan at Porthmadog.
In a tribute to Harold, his family said: “Harold achieved so much in his life and touched on so many people’s lives. He was generous, honourable, an undeterrable character with charisma.
“We shared many happy times and have many memories of adventures with him. But he also loved a gathering of friends and family at home, or just sitting in his vehicle, soaking up the sun and often running the battery flat in the process.
“He was respected, kind, shrewd and smart with a big smile. He leaves behind a legacy of several businesses, including the scrapyard, recycling yard and skip business, all the results of his hard work.”
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