Dear friends of Smith of Derby Limited
We are writing to you today to share the sad news that John Nicholas Wilkins Smith, our President and active Archivist passed away late yesterday afternoon. Mr Nick, as he was affectionately known by all of us here at Smith of Derby, died peacefully following a short illness and a heart operation. His family was with him.
There will be more to say and share with all our friends in due course, but it is enough for now to let you know that after his family, his (literally!) lifelong association with the Smith of Derby Clock Works was his proudest and most fulfilling achievement. Nick was Born on the 21st August 1935 and from that moment on had an active interest in the business. As a child he regularly joined his father as he attended to turret clocks all over the country. He became formally associated with the company in 1961, after working for a period as an accountant in Toronto, where he had met and married Gretchen. Nick then took the helm on his father’s retirement in March 1975.
For ourselves, it was an honour and privilege to be led and guided by Mr Nick over his life with the works. His careful stewardship respected but also wrote new chapters in the company’s history. He was thrilled to see such a strong revival of the company’s apprentice and training programmes, and strongly supported our substantial investment in research and development, and our pursuit of new international markets.
His great great grandfather started this business in 1856. We take immense pride in the fact that sixth generation family members, Nick Smith’s grandchildren, are now starting to get to know the company, and contributing to its future success. Together we will continue Mr Nick’s work of caring for and manufacturing public clocks all over the world.
Information on celebrating Mr Nick’s life and work will be forthcoming very soon.
Many thanks for now for all the kind wishes and messages of support that we are receiving.
Thank you and our best wishes
Smith of Derby Limited