Industry pays tribute to Graham Hopper

The kitchen industry is remembering Graham Hopper, who passed away recently aged just 61.

Hopper was known as ‘Mr Leicht UK’ after spearheading the German brand here for over 40 years.

His three sons – Liam, James and Arran – are all in the business in some capacity and have paid their own tribute to him in a heartfelt obituary.

“Graham was known in the industry for his loyalty – one man, one job, one company and one career,” they say. “That says a lot about a man’s integrity, highly uncommon these days. Graham was true to his word, straight talking and always down the line. His drive, passion for what he loved fast became his legacy many years later.

“He was highly intelligent, an intellectual and strategist within the kbb industry. He was three years from retirement but we’re not convinced he would have slowed down, his ethos was to push forward, build, stabilise, and then grow.”

Paul O’Brien and Gerry Watson at Kitchens International also paid a tribute: “Graham was first and foremost a true gentleman. His respectfulness towards everyone at Kitchens International was reciprocated in our respect for him. A man of his word – albeit very few sometimes! – he was trusted, and well worthy of it.

“We always found him an unbelievably good judge of character, and although he would never speak ill of others, he had a fabulous knack of removing himself from undesirable company.

“We will be eternally grateful for the trust and support he has given us, both personally and professionally. Kitchens International would not be where we are without him, and we are very proud of the friendship we shared- he will be sorely missed.”

Matthew Hudson at Lakeland Kitchens in Kendal said: “Words cannot describe the sadness I feel for the sudden loss of Graham,” he said. “I first met Graham six years ago through work and he became far more than a business partner to me. Graham was a good friend and mentor offering help and advice whenever called upon, going far beyond his professional role.  He really was an exceptional man whom I looked up to, I will remember him always.”

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