Derek Gill – 1933-2020

Born on the 12 May 1933 in Burnley, and has lived, grown up and spent most of his life in Burnley.

He was educated at Coal Clough Primary School, followed by Hargher Clough Secondary School and later at Burnley Grammar.

At the age of 18 he commenced his two years National Service with the RAF, following which he returned to Burnley.


He married Kathleen on 18 August 1956, following which they had 7 children – 4 boys and three girls.

Derek trained as a Chartered Accountant and qualified in 1952.  He worked as Finance Director in Rochdale before moving to a new job as Joint Managing Director for Tetracel.

He resigned from this Company in the early ‘80’s with the intention of starting his own business.  After about 15 months of searching for a suitable company, he bought Lupton and Place, a small manufacturing company which, over the years he has built up into a thriving business.  Three of his sons and one daughter are involved in senior roles with the company. He was a Director there for more than 30 years only stepping down as Chairman in May 2019.

Derek was well known as a particularly good Tenor singer and performed at many venues throughout the North West.

Derek was also a keen crown-green bowler and was a member of Ightenhill Bowling Club, serving as club treasurer for many years.  He was a parishioner at St Mary Magdalene’s RC Church and a member of Burnley Catenians for more than 40 years.

Derek has served as a Director of Burnley Football Club in very difficult financial (and John Bond) times – his stories about this era are interesting to say the least and his diaries for that period were a source of material for the recent Dave Thomas biography about Bob Lord.  Dave thought highly of Derek saying that “the financial wizardry of Derek Gill had seen an insolvent club accumulate a bank balance that would have had even Jack Butterfield filled with admiration.”   Derek, whose time as Director ended in May 1985, was critical of final years of Lord’s reign as Chairman including the so-called Lowerhouse Land deal.  A further quote from Dave: “Gill had, in fact, worked miracles to get the Club solvent again but his good work simply went to waste.”   He remained an avid supporter of the club.

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