A mentor for many and personal friend for many more, the former chief executive of BemroseBooth has died after a short battle with cancer. He was aged 66.
Graham James Bennington was the leader of the UK’s largest manufacturer of machine issued car parking and public transport tickets and joined the then Bemrose Corporation in 1977. He took on a number of different positions within the firm, notably personnel manager and operations director, before rising to the post of chief executive in 2000.
The former BemroseBooth leader was a mentor to Customer Focus and Altitude Group Plc chief executive Martin Varley. Graham introduced him to the promotional products industry and helped the Customer Focus leader to further develop his entrepreneurial skills.
On hearing the tragic news, Martin paid tribute to his “friend and inspiration”.
“He was so talented as a business leader, it was impossible to hold him in anything but the highest of esteems; he was an expert negotiator, HR guru (he called it personnel) and leader. He took a company that was just a supplier of car park and rail tickets to the number one company for promo products in the world.
“He knew when to invest and when to divest, he shared his skills widely, encouraged enthusiastically, and every now and again very elegantly gave you that look and you knew you had not quite done your best.”
“He supported me when I didn’t deserve it, he had my back, front and side and we laughed and we laughed and we laughed.”
Graham died peacefully on 20 October at the Butterfly Hospice in Boston, Lincolnshire, with his wife Sandie by his side.
You can read Martin Varley’s full tribute to Graham Bennington here.