Death of former well known Burnley businessman "Ceiling Syd"

A former well known business owner in the building trade has died after falling ill on holiday in Thailand at the age of 77.

A former well known business owner in the building trade has died after falling ill on holiday in Thailand at the age of 77.Syd Harrison was flown home to England by an air ambulance chartered by his daughter Wendy and he died in the Royal Blackburn Hospital.

Well known in the building trade as a "Ceiling Syd" due to the large metal stilts he used rather than ladders, Syd specialised in suspended ceilings.

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He ran his own company, S and D Harrison Suspended Ceilings, for many years and sold the business when he retired at the age of 50.

Originally from Preston, Syd had lived in Burnley for around 45 years. He previously ran a corner shop in North Street with his wife, Dorothy, who died in 1996.

He built his own home in the Lanehead area of the town and 20 years ago built homes in the Manchester Road area for Wendy and his late son, Peter who died in 2011.

He then built himself a bungalow next door to their houses.

A keen golfer, Syd was a member of Burnley Golf Club and although a stroke stopped him from playing the game he loved two years ago, he still enjoyed going to the club and attending the regular poker nights held there.

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A senior match due to be played on the day of Syd's funeral has been cancelled so that members can pay their last respects to him.

Devastatingly the stroke also robbed Syd of the power of speech and he was unable to read or write.

His Thai partner Nhoy, looked after him and Syd made regular trips to visit her in Thailand and she would often come to England.

Wendy said:”My dad was always there for all the family whenever we needed him.

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“My partner Nick and I went to Thailand last month to see my dad as he was very poorly and I made a promise to him then that I would get him back home.

“I am just to relieved we managed to do that as I think he was waiting for this as he died just a few hours later.

“I couldn’t have done it without my family and friends.”

Syd also leaves son-in-law Tony and sister Hilda.

The funeral will be held next Tuesday (May 8th) at Burnley Crematorium at 1-40pm. There is a request for family flowers only but donations are being accepted for Safenet c/o Alderson and Horan Funeral Directors, Rossendale Road, Burnley.

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