Villagers mourn death of ‘Mr Read’ Cyril Law

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TIRELESS and hugely respected Read churchwarden and parish councillor Mr Cyril Law has died aged 84.

Mr Law gave 48 years’ service to his role as churchwarden at St John’s Church, Read, serving under five vicars, and being a familiar face to many.

But the popular gentleman also gave much more to his community, serving on Read Parish Council from 1970 to 2006, as a magistrate for 20 years and as a respected instructor to scores of apprentices at former Burnley aerospace company Lucas.

Mr Law was chairman of the parish council from 1980 and will be mourned by many who knew him in the village where he could justifiably be called “Mr Read”.

He was also a keen baker, fan of Burnley Football Club and Read Cricket Club and devoted family man.

Married to former Read Primary School teacher, Joyce, the couple lived in the same house in Read throughout their married life of 62 years.

The couple’s only child, John, said: “My dad was very well respected in Read and beyond for his unstinting service to the community.

“He was also very well-known for his time spent at Lucas Aerospace where he worked as a mechanical engineer and most of his career as an instructor in the Lucas engineer training school. In fact whenever we went on Turf Moor, his old apprentices would always stop and say hello. They remembered him after all these years. He was a perfectionist who was firm but fair. He called them his ‘lads’ and was proud when they went on to better things and kept in touch.

“As for his time on the parish council, dad didn’t believe in party politics. Helping local people with their problems was more important to him.

“In fact, dad was instrumental in having Read placed under Ribble Valley District Council when the re-organisation of local government happened in 1974. This was because he wanted Read to be part of a more rural organisation.”

Mr Law, who grew up in Accrington, met Joyce at a dance in Read School, and they settled in the village. Mrs Law worked for many years as a teacher at the school where her husband was also a governor.

Mr Law served in the Royal Navy during the war as a Petty Officer. Despite suffering a heart attack in 1984, Mr Law completed the London Marathon four years later at the age of 61. He also completed the Coast to Coast Walk and the West Highland Way in 1994.