Posted by: Laura Hammond
Tue 11th July 2023
New memorial benches have been installed at the grounds of Alfreton House, paying a lasting tribute to Queen Elizabeth ll and to businessman David Nieper.
The benches were officially unveiled by the Mayor of Alfreton, Councillor Hannah Jowett-Frost, on Saturday (July 8).
Queen Elizabeth ll passed away at the age of 96 on September 8 last year, while Mr Nieper died at the age of 90 on August 11, 2021.
Mr Nieper founded his company in Alfreton in 1961 with the support of the then town clerk Harry Taylor.
He rented the old Nissen hut to Mr Nieper and his wife Rosemary, loaning them the premises for free for the first six months and even giving him a typewriter.
Mr Nieper was eternally grateful to Mr Taylor for having the vision to support small, local business and shared his admiration for him in his book, Persistence Wins.
Mr Nieper’s memorial bench was paid for by The Christopher Nieper Foundation, a charity established in 2020 as the philanthropic arm of David Nieper Ltd.
Christopher Nieper OBE, eldest son of Mr Nieper and chief executive of the fashion business, said: “It was Alfreton Council who persuaded my father to start his business in Alfreton back in 1961, offering him a wartime Nissen hut for the princely sum of £1 per week.
“Here we are 62 years later having worked with several thousand local staff over that time.
“A big thank you to Alfreton Town Council for recognising his contribution with this memorial seat and to the skilled people of Alfreton we’ve had the privilege of working with for so long.”
The bench dedicated to Queen Elizabeth ll was paid for by Derbyshire County Councillor David Wilson and Alfreton Town Council paid for them to be installed.
Mayor of Alfreton, Councillor Hannah Jowett-Frost said: “We are delighted to work with local businesses and to fund the installation of three benches to commemorate David Nieper and The Queen.
“David Nieper was the pioneer for the firm, which has been in Alfreton from its inception, and which has since gone on to set up a Foundation and the academy for the school. County Councillor David Wilson funded the bench to commemorate The Queen.
“We hope the benches will be respected and admired for years to come.”
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