John Marcus Burton BSc(Tech) FIET
Obituary provided by Marcus Burton MIET
John Marcus Burton, known to his friends and colleagues as Jack, passed away peacefully in the early hours of 29 September 2017 having recently celebrated his 92nd birthday.
Jack was born in Accrington in 1925. Having lost his father when only seven years of age, he was brought up by his mother Doris who understood the importance of education and opportunity. He earned a scholarship to attend Burnage High School and in 1940 he entered the Electricity Supply Industry joining Alderley Edge and Wilmslow Electricity Board as an apprentice.His efforts were rewarded when in 1943 he was awarded the Silvanus P. Thompson Scholarship from the Institution of Electrical Engineers (now the Institution of Engineering and Technology) to study Electrical Engineering at Manchester University.
After graduation he joined Birmingham Corporation Electric Supply Department as a trainee. Following nationalisation in 1947, he was appointed as a Junior Engineer in the newly created Midlands Electricity Board (MEB), where he followed a successful and respected career in engineering and became Head of Engineering for the MEB Birmingham Area.
In 1970 he transferred to the MEB headquarters to become Deputy Chief Engineer for the whole Board. In 1975 Jack was appointed as General Manager for the MEB South Staffs Area, one of the four regions of the MEB in operation at that time. This gave him responsibility for retail operations and consumer operations, as well as overall management of the region’s activities including engineering. Jack was a natural leader and enjoyed this overall responsibility.
In 1981 he returned to the Birmingham Area as General Manager until his retirement in 1987. During his career with the MEB he also used his expertise acting for the Government and the National Industry as an adviser in Europe and the Middle East.
He was a Fellow of the IET (FIET), was proud to have a foundation block named for him at IET London: Savoy Place and during his retirement contributed 22 years of service supporting the IET Benevolent Fund.
Jack married Barbara Knowles in 1947 and they were together for nearly 52 years before Barbara passed away in 1999. They had five children; Stephen, who passed away in 2016, Paul, Marcus, Deborah and Matthew. In addition to his four children, he is survived by eleven grandchildren and eight great grand-children.