Funeral Service

Time: 2.00pm

Date: Friday 17th September 2021

Service Details:
A celebration of John's life will be held at All Saints Church, Clayton-le-Moors followed by committal at Accrington Crematorium. Please feel you can wear something bright to honour John's memory on the day.

John Cookson

John passed away peacefully at his home with his wife Gillian and sons David and Andrew by his side on his 73rd birthday.

John was born in Clayton-le-Moors and educated at All Saints Primary School and then Accrington Grammar School. He went on to study Microbiology at Wolverhampton Technology College and then undertook his Brewing Pupilage at Matthew Brown Brewery in Blackburn. He worked for many years at Matthew Brown becoming Second Brewer and then he joined Robinson’s Brewery in Stockport becoming Packaging Director before taking early retirement in 2003 and returning to live in Clayton-le-Moors.

John had many interests including travel, cars, DIY, music, singing, gardening and watch clock repair. Travel brought much joy to his life. He spent many summer holidays in Levanto, Italy while in winter he enjoyed time in Alpbach, Austria with his beloved wife Gillian – often with his family joining them on these holidays.

John was a member of All Saints Church Choir in his youth and his love of music remained with him all his life. He loved to sing and was the life and soul of every family party.

John’s garden was a source of great pride and pleasure to him and in years later he was a member of the Clayton Hall Allotment Group, taking a plot as well as assisting with its running and operations.

John will be sorely missed by his family and many friends. He leaves his wife Gillian, sons David and Andrew and his four grandchildren Cameron, Elizabeth, George and James- all of whom he loved dearly.

Family flowers only please, donations can be made in memory of John to Cancer Research UK via the donate button below.

Please feel free to leave a message for John’s online memorial book by completing the form below.

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MESSAGES for the family of John Cookson


Philip Bradshaw

John’s countless friends will carry with them so many happy memories of times shared with him. For myself these go back to the 50s and 60s when All Saints’, AGS and later the Jazz Club were the centre of our universe. I have fond memories of John re-enacting moments from sporting legends – Juan Fangio racing around the front lawn at the Grange and Bobby Charlton brushing his stray over his head after scoring a wonder goal in a kick-about! John’s musical talents were often in evidence. How he loved to lead “community singing”. We are all richer for having known John’s sense of humour and caring nature. He will never be forgotten.



The Connells/Cooksons in California send all their love to Gillian and family. Although we are not there with you in person, we are with you in spirit and will toast John in spirit, remembering him for his joie de vivre, his sense of humor and love of family.


Elaine Jones née Shorrock

My sister Leila and I will remember John with great fondness as he was a big part of our child hood and early teens. Always fun loving, kind and considerate. We will always remember a summer of bike rides along the country lanes of Clitheroe and Whalley. He will be sadly missed.


Roger Penman

John (cookie ) Was a great dependable friend always up for a laugh. Loved to sing and be the life and soul of the get togethers had over the years. I was a lucky guy being a friend of John. He loved life and most of all loved his wonderful wife Gillian.


Bev Edmonds ( nee Westwell )

John Cookson (Aka Cookie) will be missed by so many people. He was a kind, adored, family man, who always had a sparkle about him and a wicked sense of humour. He loved cars, old, new and especially sporty. We organised All Saints Youth Club reunions, from 2006, when we celebrated 40 years since the 1966 Good Friday photo of us “Out for a ramble”. John, Gillian, Clive and myself were often looking for venues or discussing the progress of our tomatoes, vegetables and if we had any figs or not. We are all so sad, to have lost him and our hearts go out to Gillian and all of his family.


David Barr

What can I say about this special person? We shared so many happy times together through life’s phases. Full of joy and humour. It has been a privilege to have been his friend for all those years. So many memories which will never fade. He will be sadly missed.


Anne Pickup ( nee Rigby)

So many fond memories of John. He was such a big and constant part of my early life, going back to the age of 4 when we started All Saint’s Primary School together, even sharing a prize in our final year there. Then on to youth club days, the Jazz Club and beyond into adulthood. Such enduring memories – walking over Pendle Hill on Good Friday, camping at Silverdale, but most of all John leading the singing at the end of an evening on a night out with friends, John’s love of cars was evident from an early age as he zoomed up and down the drive at The Grange before he could drive on the roads. Always jovial and kindly, it was such a pleasure to be in John’s company and great to meet up again at our recent reunions.


David Hitchon

I met John when I joined Matthew Brown in 1975. I was 24, he was 27. We became very good friends. He took me “under his wing” and was great fun to work with. John and Gillian became close family friends. and have remained so for the last 45 years. I cannot imagine a better friend. He was thoughtful, the life and soul of every party and I am so glad I have had the honour to know him and his family. Having a few pints with John will be greatly missed. If you can count your best mates on one hand, then John was there. Au revoir my friend. I’m going to miss you.


Margaret Holland

What a beautiful service of Thanksgiving to celebrate the life of John. It was wonderful to see how many people made it to pay their respects to John. Cheers!


Sheila Taylor

John and Gillian made such a lovely loving couple . They have been our very dear friends for many years. Their kindness and support were much appreciated. John was always such good company and a true gentleman in every way. He will be sadly missed by all who knew him. Sincere condolences to his very dear family. R.I.P.


Peter and Claire

Our heartfelt condolences to all the family. John was such a generous spirit and he will be greatly missed. I am sure he will now be playing a central role in the heavenly choir.


Ginny & Amp; Bill Aighton and Family
John was simply one of the best. He was indeed a very special person and it has been an honour and a privilege to have known him and to have called him our dearest friend, for many years. We shall forever treasure the memories of all the times we have spent together with him and his beloved wife Gillian and their adored family. The happy times we shared together were full of fun and laughter and in the less happy times we were grateful for John’s strength and support. We loved John very much and will miss him terribly.