Death of former electrical engineer who became a popular vicar

The Rev Michael Burgess has died at the age of 83
The Rev Michael Burgess has died at the age of 83
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A popular and well known vicar, in Burnley and Nelson, has died at the age of 83.

The Rev Michael Burgess did not enter the ministry until he was 48, training at theological college in Wales for two years.

Until then his career had been in electrical engineering and he had even set up his own company making electrical panels for places such as the Blackwall Tunnel which runs underneath the River Thames in East London.

But Rev Burgess always had a strong faith and a close connection to the church, singing in the choir and serving as church warden.

So he made the decision to train for the ministry while his late wife Sue supported the family working as a languages teacher at Nelson's Fisher More RC High School.

Born in Nelson, Rev Burgess, who had two grandchildren, was a former pupil of Walter Street primary and the former Mansfield high schools.

His first posting was as curate at St Matthew's Church in Burnley and his first church as vicar was in Preston.

He was then appointed as vicar at St Bede's in Nelson where he served for several years and although retired he continued to be an active vicar, helping out at St Catherine's Church in Burnley conducting services, weddings and funerals.

Rev Burgess, who lived in Reedley, was also well travelled, visiting his sons Stephen and Simon in Australia where they have lived for several years, 15 times.

He also went to Thailand to see Simon when he lived there for a time.

Rev Burgess' funeral was held at St Catherine's Church on Monday followed by cremation at Burnley.