Former Wyre Forest businessman dies aged 89

A former managing director of Steatite and Porcelain in Stourport which became Morgan Matroc has died aged 89.

Don Evans
Don Evans

Originally from Port Talbot, Don Evans was proud of his Welsh roots and studied for a degree and PhD in chemistry at Durham University's Kings College in Newcastle.

While at university he met and married his wife, Jean, and they were together for more than 65 years.

After leaving University Don worked for The Anglo Great Lakes Corporation in Newcastle and this included a 12-month spell in the USA.

In 1968, he and Jean moved to Bewdley when he joined Steatite and Porcelain in Stourport as technical director, later becoming managing director.

In the 1980s he was an active participant in the Confederation of British Industry as a member of the West Midland Regional Council and chairman of the Hereford and Worcester region.

Jim Panter, a former colleague, said: “Don made an enormous contribution to the local economy through his shrewd and tenacious leadership of the Stourport headquartered Morgan Matroc, which emerged from Steatite during the 1980’s.

"Under his stewardship it became a world leader in ceramics for high tech applications and his vision and tenacity led to profitable growth and acquisitions throughout the world, developing a highly regarded international profile.

"Many young managers benefited from his forward-thinking and empowering management techniques in a company which has provided secure and rewarding employment for generations of Stourport families."

After retiring from Morgan Matroc, Don became a consultant for a company in Rhode Island in America and was honoured to become the Millenium Distinguished Visiting Professor at Johnson & Wales University of Providence.

He was also very proud to receive a written citation from the State's Governor in recognition of his work.

In his spare time Don was a keen fisherman and gardener and member of the Royal Horticultural Society.

Don and his wife recently relocated to Princes Risborough in Buckinghamshire and a funeral service is to be held at Aylesbury Vale Crematorium at 12.30pm on October 18 attended by family and friends with donations in lieu of flowers to Age UK or Alzheimers Research UK.

He is survived by his wife, Jean, daughter Kay Bambrick, and grandchildren Joe, Megan, Billy, Huw and Henry.

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