Tributes paid to community figure following Leyland Festival

John Holt at the Leyland Festival
John Holt at the Leyland Festival
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This year’s Leyland Festival had a special poignancy for one family.

The loves ones of the late John Holt reflected on many happy memories.

John Holt

John Holt

John, who died on May 14, was the show’s chief mounted marshall for 22 years.

Born and bred in Leyland, John, 81, who lived at West Paddock, was a life member of Leyland Round Table.

He worked for animal rendering family business T&A Burns of Westhoughton before joining the Household Cavalry, then returning to the business.

John also worked as a director at chicken processor Kewhouse Farm, Freshfields, Southport, in the 1960s.

He founded Holt, Dietz and Davis with Ken Dietz and Dave Davis, based in Withnell Fold, Chorley, manufacturing curtains for commercial and private clients in the 1970s.

He was a member of 41 Club Member of the masonic lodge, set up Wellington Park, Leyland, when old Masonic Hall closed down.

A South Ribble magistrate for many years, he was chairman of the bench at Leyland.

He was also a former chairman of the police committee and a governor of Worden High School, Leyland.

First honorary president of the British Horse Society, he worked tirelessly for Association of British Riding Clubs, and was heavily involved with Longton Riding Club for many years.

His family said he was passionate about Leyland Brass Band.

John married Dr Lois Holt in 1958,

He leaves two daughters, Carolyn (Cally) and Alison (Ally), four grandchildren Becky, Tom, Matt and Dan and one great granddaughter Ella.

One comment on the Leyland Memories Facebook page described him “as big a part of Leyland as Leyland Cross”.

Daughter Carolyn Kirkby said: “Dad was a big family man, very proud of living to be a great granddad to Ella.

“He loved reminiscing over a pint with his many friends over the years.

“Sadly his health put a stop to his social life over the last 12 months or so.

“He will be sorely missed by all who knew and loved him.”

John died peacefully at his daughter Alison’s home in Wales.