Tributes to engineer Jim Hudson

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DOCTORS labelled him ‘The Bionic Man’ for the way Jim Hudson bounced back from a succession of serious accidents and potentially life-threatening illnesses.

“And he always came through with that lovely smile of his,” said Mary Hudson, paying tribute to her husband of 49 years who died last Wednesday.

Mr Hudson, who was 73, had for several months battled against an illness with similar characteristics to Parkinson’s Disease which had severely affected his mobility.

The cause of death has still to be determined and a post-mortem and inquest will be held.

Mr Hudson, who lived at Maryville Avenue, Brighouse, survived two horrific accidents in the early years of his career as an engineer at Brighouse valve manufacturers J. Blakeborough and Sons Ltd.

Riding to work on his motorcycle he was involved in an accident with a lorry that turned into his path in Birds Royd Lane.

Mr Hudson received multiple injuries and was off work for three months.

In the final year of his apprenticeship he was struck by a piece of metal thrown out from a lathe and subsequently lost his sight in one eye.

In his 40s he suffered a burst ulcer which required a transfusion of five pints of blood. He had a heart attack when he was 58 and underwent a triple heart bypass operation.

“All of these were life-threatening but Jim would shrug them off and get on with things,” said Mrs Hudson.

Born in Bradford, he came to Brighouse when he was 11. His father bought a grocery business at Bridge End and later took over Soothills fish and chips business in Lightcliffe Road.

He attended Rastrick Grammar School and applied to join the Royal Navy as an officer entrant but just failed the height requirement.

He started his 32-year career at Blakeborough’s in the turning shop and was employed in work study before becoming a foreman at the Sherwood Works.

He worked in the computerised machinery department at the Woodhouse Works and rose to senior foreman and chief inspector.

Mr Hudson met his wife at Blakebborough’s where she worked in the offices. He stayed with the company until it was closed in 1989. He spent 14 years with a company in Rodley, Leeds, until he retired in 2002 aged 63.

Mr Hudson was an enthusiastic and hard-working member of Hove Edge Bowling Club for 50 years.

He was an honorary life member, on the committee for 10 years and captained two league teams.

He continued bowling up to two years ago and both he and his wife raised money for the club.

The couple loved travelling and made many friends on their trips in this country and abroad. Several are expected to attend Mr Hudson’s funeral at Park Wood Crematorium, Elland, next Tuesday at noon.

Mr Hudson leaves his wife Mary, daughters Jane and Lisa, and grandchildren Laura, Emma, Zoe, Sophie and Abigail.