Former Mark Two Distribution founder and KBB industry legend Nick ‘Hoppy’ Hopkinson MBE has died.
Hopkinson – who was known fondly by many in the KBB industry by the nickname ‘Hoppy’ – described himself as a ‘philanthropist and fundraiser’ founded Mark Two, the Bolton-based bathroom distribution business, in 1984.
Though he eventually sold the the Mark Two business in 2013, he remained a key figure in the industry for many years, investing in several other ventures including Faith Furniture and Clifton Trade Bathrooms.
Hopkinson’s dedication to the KBB industry was rewarded with the Special Achievement Award at the kbbreview Retail & Design Awards in 2010.
Tributes have been pouring in from industry friends and colleagues since the news was announced yesterday.
Damian Walters, CEO BiKBBI said: “I am shocked and saddened, brought to tears in fact, to learn that someone I looked up to, respected and admired has passed away. As I developed the concept of BiKBBI, I looked at your business success and entrepreneurialism as a guiding light.
As I grew from a young man to a family man, your charity and community work drove me from being a self centred, career and money obsessed bloke, to someone who values life and understands the importance of the community.
Your guide over the years spurred me on to focus on the next generation and your can do attitude fuelled my drive our very own apprenticeship programme, cycle continents and climb into the sky… Christ, I even enquired into becoming a High Sheriff, just so I could wear tight pants and frilly collars – because you pulled it off so well.
I’m truly devastated for you and your family, but your legacy will live on and I promise I will continue on the path your inspiration ignited in me. Rest in Peace Nick ????.”
Martin Mongan, CEO Bristan Group said: “Such terribly sad news. A proper legend in everything he put his mind to. His charitable works will be a very fitting legacy to an incredible individual. RIP.”
Outside of the KBB industry Hopkinson was known for his charitable interests. He spent more than 20 years as director of fundraising for Bolton Lads and Girls Club, raising millions of pounds for the cause during that time. In honour of his charity work he was awarded an MBE in 2009.
In April last year Hopkinson was chosen by the Queen to take on the role of High Sheriff of Cheshire – a role he proudly held until March 2021.
He is survived by his wife Lesley, three sons and three grandchildren.