Gypsum manager who enjoyed country life

Date: Tuesday 29th January 2019

TRIBUTES have been paid to a former manager at British Gypsum who enjoyed country life.

James Stuart Kinnear, who was better known by his middle name, was born in Carlisle in April, 1940, and his parents were George and Mary.

The family moved to Kirkby Thore when his father took over running of the village shop. Stuart was educated at the village school and Appleby Grammar School.

When he left school he went to work for British Gypsum in the surveying department at Cocklakes and during this time he attended Workington College where he passed his mine surveying exams with distinction.

In 1965 Stuart became assistant manager at the Kirkby Thore mines, and Newbiggin quarry and mines, and also became a fellow of the Institute of Quarrying.

In 1982 he was promoted to manager of the exploration department which involved travelling around the country arranging and supervising drilling for gypsum.

Due to changed practices in the use of gypsum, drilling was no longer needed and he was made redundant in 1990. He took on various part-time work.

He met his future wife, Margaret, at a dance at Penrith Rugby Club and the couple were married in 1965. They lived in Penrith for a year before moving to Newbiggin, Temple Sowerby, in 1966. They had three sons, Colin, David and Paul.

Stuart enjoyed country life, going fishing and shooting rabbits, and when he was younger he fished with his uncle for salmon and trout in the Keswick area. He also enjoyed making his own flies, rods and other angling equipment.

He was also interested in motorcycles. He had many machines over the years, and he enjoyed stripping down the bikes and rebuilding them.

Stuart served on the committee of Penrith Angling Club for many years. He helped the club following a pollution incident, and also helped Eden Rivers Trust whenever he could.

When he lived at Newbiggin he was secretary of the parish meeting for a number of years and he also served on the board of governors of his old school in Kirkby Thore.

He enjoyed gardening, growing lots of vegetables and tomatoes, and built ponds as well as a conservatory and patio at their home in Newbiggin. His other hobbies included wood turning, wood carving and painting.

Stuart and Margaret enjoyed caravan and cycling holidays, as well as bus tours in the UK, and travelled to a number of other countries including Spain, Malta, Cyprus and Portugal.

He played dominoes at the Kings Arms, Temple Sowerby, and he and Margaret both enjoyed playing at Temple Sowerby Bowling Club. They moved to Appleby in 2013 and Stuart was later cared for at Cold Springs dementia unit, Penrith.

As well as wife Margaret and their three sons he is survived by their daughters-in-law — Christine, Amanda and Melanie — and grandchildren Sarah, Lucy, Liam and Amelia.

Margaret said Stuart was very kind man who would do anything for anybody. “He was very popular, and had a great sense of humour,” she said.