Obituary John Parkin, JP

After his schooldays, John did National Service, then joined the family firm, F. Parkin and Sons, which was recovering from bomb damage in Exeter. He built up the business as Managing Director and at one stage it was one of the largest employers in Exeter.

He joined his father in encouraging the work of blacksmiths by starting the Blacksmiths of Devon Stand at the County Show and supporting them to their present high standard. He was President of the Show in 2004 and, in recognition of his work, the Metalwork Building at the Showground will be renamed after him at the 2014 Show.

He was made a Companion of Honour in the Worshipful Company of Blacksmiths, a livery Company committed to maintaining the craft of Blacksmithing. In 1968 he was elected to one of the few remaining provincial Livery companies in the country, the Incorporation of Weavers, Fullers and Shearmen (committed to lavish dinners and wine).

In 1969 John was appointed a magistrate on the Exeter Bench, serving for 30 years, five of them as Chairman.

A member of Round Table and Rotary in his earlier years, he was also involved with a number of Exeter Charities, being Chairman of all of them at one time or another.

His generosity of spirit and sense of humour lasted for 84 years and he is survived by his wife, 6 children and 12 grandchildren.