On behalf of everyone at the Goldsmiths’ Craft & Design Council, it’s many industry supporters and our countless number of entrants, we were deeply saddened to hear of Simon’s passing. We offer our sincere condolences and sympathy to Kate and her family, and hope they are able to take some solace from this tribute.
First and foremost, Simon was a fabulous and revered craftsman and a lovely person. He effortlessly and naturally worked across differing scales jewellery and modelmaking, always working to high standards of resolution. The Council were very fortunate to receive some of Simon’s masterpieces in recent Goldsmiths’ competitions. As a leading craftsman with Theo Fennell for over three decades, it was in 2013 that Simon made his first mark of excellence. He won a Gold Award in the Modelmakers and Smallworkers craft section for his model of a motorbike, along with the acclaimed ‘Senior Award’ as the best overall piece of work in the competition. This was an amazing start, considerable impact and contribution to the Awards and the wider profession.
Highly charged from such success, this proved to be the catalyst to spur Simon on even further. In the following year, he made another model, it took 8 months of enjoyable weekends working in his workshop at home. This time his craftsmanship was classed as outstanding and exceptional by judges and the Council alike. Along with winning the Senior Award again, Simon was presented with the Jacques Cartier Memorial Award, the ultimate prize, accolade and pinnacle in the competition. Simon joined an elite group of 37 craftsmen and women in claiming this unique achievement and eminence, since the Cartier Award was instigated in 1958.
In subsequent years Simon won a string of other notable Awards in modelmaking for his Locomotive and Formula 1 Car, winning Gold Awards and also a Patron Named Award.
Even when Simon knew of his illness, he remained determined to make another piece for the competition, it kept him going and gave him a target to aim for. He managed to finish his delicate Pendant, which resulted in another great Gold Award. Without doubt, Simon enriched the competition and set a very high bar of excellence across all of his entries for others to take note and aspire to.
Simon also enthusiastically participated in other Council events, he was an integral part of the Cartier Award winners in conversation event in 2015, and featured in Councils promotional Awards evening videos with gusto, infectious enthusiasm and abundant energy.
In summary, a world class craftsman and wonderful man, who had a love affair with making precious metal items that was second nature to him. The workshop was his domain and he thrived on creating high calibre work throughout his long and distinguished career. Kate enthusiastically supported Simon all the way, and he was never happier than when at his work bench with Kate’s continuous encouragement and enthusiasm for supporting Simon’s great strength and true vocation.
As we reflect on the sorrow of losing Simon, it is also right and important to celebrate his blessed life, and the amazingly talented, skilled and experienced person he was. Simon had a wonderful personality, he made a significant contribution to our profession, and leaves us with a legacy for us all to admire, respect and remember with pride, respect, joy and admiration
Thank you, Simon, we will greatly miss, and never forget you, your exemplary contribution was unique and will be long lasting.
Consultant, Goldsmiths’ Craft & Design Council