Hundreds turn out to honour inspirational company founder
- Credit: Mick Howes
The well-respected founder of an internationally recognised company has been fondly remembered during a poignant procession.
The Harrod UK flags were flying at half mast in Lowestoft as more than 200 people turned out to pay their respects as a funeral cortège honoured Ron Harrod.
Keen Rotarian and founder of Harrod UK, Mr Harrod, 89, died on December 29.
A cavalcade of Harrod UK vehicles preceded the hearse as it drove past the Harrod UK factory and offices in south Lowestoft, before heading onto a private family funeral service and celebration of Mr Harrod's life at Our Lady Star of the Sea Church in Lowestoft on Friday, February 5.
A Harrod UK spokesman said: "All 138 Harrod UK employees were socially distanced outside the factory paying their respects as the cortège passed."
The cortège was flanked to the front and back by two Harrod lorries and four Harrod vans from Harrod Sport and Harrod Horticultural.
With other workers from neighbouring businesses, together with Rotary members lining the route near the Harrod UK factory, more than 200 people turned out to pay tribute to the popular company founder, applauding as the procession passed.
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Mr Harrod and his wife Margaret had started Harrod of Lowestoft in 1954, which is now more commonly known as Harrod UK, Harrod Sport and Harrod Horticultural.
As the much-loved husband of 67 years to Margaret, father to Chris, Stephanie and Mark, Mr Harrod was "immensely respected and loved" by all.
Mr Harrod's son Chris said that Mrs Harrod was escorted by Maxine from Grandora Care Home Lodge in the funeral car.
He added that the factory was shut for the afternoon as all the staff were given time off to watch the live stream of the funeral from their homes.
Mr Harrod was a highly active Rotarian, and paying tribute to Mr Harrod, fellow Rotarian past president David Ferns said: “I ran a charity taking aid to Romania in the 1990s.
"Ron quickly joined me as a trustee and was largely instrumental in its success.
"His lorries collected donations from all over the UK and he lent us warehousing and forklifts all without complaint or question.
"Along with his son Chris we shared a couple of trips to Romania and on the long car drive, I think we laughed all the way."