Belfast Telegraph

Northern Ireland businessman Norman Lynas passes away

Norman Lynas
Norman Lynas

Northern Ireland businessman Norman Lynas has passed away at the age of 77.

Mr Lynas, chairman of Lynas Food Service died on Saturday after a short battle with a stroke and then a brain tumour.

His son Peter said that he passed away peacefully surrounded by his family.

The company is based in the Coleraine area and currently employs around 560 staff, having recently expanded into Scotland.

Mr Lynas joined the family business in 1958 aged just 16 after his father Bobby suffered a heart attack.

What started as a small fishmongers shop grew into a frozen food business with a turnover of £7m by 1991.

By 2008 the company had expanded into the Republic of Ireland and had an annual turnover of £48m.

Mr Lynas was awarded an OBE for services to business, the community and charity in 2017.

He was a committed members of the Portstewart Baptist Church and formed 'Exodus', a youth disciple organisation, in the area with his wife Lynda.

Mr Lynas' son Andrew, now managing director of the company, described his father as a "salesperson at heart".

Andrew Lynas with dad Norman.
Andrew Lynas with dad Norman.

"He loved his customers, enjoying calling on them for a cup of tea or seeing them at the different food shows and ensuring that their business was thriving. From schools, hospitals, chip shops to coffee shops he loved 'serving the Caterer'," he wrote in a tribute on the company's website.

"Dad loved Coleraine and the local community, involved in the Enterprise Agency and setting up a local Dragons Den in the teeth of the 2008 recession. He was a man who loved people and interacting with them, even at the end of his life he wanted to be around people."

Andrew Lynas said that his father had left a legacy "well beyond just the business".

He is also survived by son David.

A service of thanksgiving for Mr Lynas will take place in Portstewart Baptist Church on Wednesday at 1pm.

"He is fondly remembered as an encourager and dreamer who thoroughly embraced Jesus’ words in John 10:10 – I have come that you might have life to the full," a family death notice read.

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