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John Tarsey dies aged 93

Feb 17, 2014
Former President of BAR, John Tarsey died just before Christmas at the age of 93.

John started work for Pickfords aged 14 in their local office in his home town of Bournemouth before joining the Royal Artillery five years later at the outbreak of World War 2.  Having joined as a private, his leadership qualities were quickly identified and he was placed on an officer training course.  His, albeit short, training prepared him for battle in North Africa and then the Sicily/Italy campaign before pressing on into Germany.  He left the army in 1946 as a Major and returned to Pickfords.

 

His officer training marked him out as 'management material' and he was dispatch for his first assignment to Pickfords in Harrogate.  A meteoric rise saw him run ever-larger branches in Taunton, Sunderland, Chester and Manchester over the course of the next few years before taking over management of the South Western area from the Bristol base.

 

In 1962 he was again promoted, this time to Pickfords Head Office, ultimately as Chief Removal and Travel Manager, a long way in every sense from the fourteen-year-old clerk who had joined the company all those years before.  He left the company in 1970 to set up in business with his friend and international removal stalwart Frank Hibbs in West London before joining the Cantay Group as managing director two years later.  In 1974 he started Mudd the Mover in Suffolk but the pull to the south of England was strong and he joined Bishop's Move at its Wokingham operation until he retired in 1998. He served as BAR President in 1975.

 

John and his wife Pam retired to Lincolnshire, where Pam died in 2010 and after that he moved to live near his family on the south coast.

 

John was a lifelong motor racing fan and closely followed all sorts of motorsport, particularly the Le Mans 24 Hours which he visited regularly. Those who remember him will always recall not only his wisdom and professionalism but also his mischievous sense of humour. He leaves two sons, six grandchildren and one great granddaughter, whom he met for the first time a few weeks before he died.

 

Photo: John Tarsey

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