Date added: 13/09/2016 Behind the Scenes: Q&A with John Pass
Our Q&A series with the John Pass staff, past and present, continues today with John Pass
The history began when my great grandfather had a workshop in Coventry making parts for pocket watches. With the advent of mass production in Switzerland and America, the British watch making industry went into decline and his son Thomas Pass moved to Sandbach in 1906 to be a watch-repairer for CH Moody. He had three sons, the youngest being John Pass (John’s father) who served his time as an apprentice watch-maker alongside his elder brother Edwin/Ted. The second world war came along and they both joined the RAF as instrument makers. After the war, they joined a repair workshop in Haslington and realised that as they were both married men with families, they needed to do more. Uncle Ted went to Alsager and opened a shop, and John Pass came to Nantwich Road in 1956 to open a retail shop and a workshop. I joined the firm in 1963 and the cogs continued to turn from there on.
2. When was your favourite time working at John Pass?
It just kept getting better all the time. My working time was made of three stages – an apprentice at the bench, jewellery repairs and when Martin arrived I moved over to the retail side. John Pass senior retired when I was about 35, Jean joined the business at this stage. We then joined the CMJ shortly afterwards, completely advancing things. This continued to move on until 1997 when Andrew joined the business. The rest is history.
3. When did you realise that John Pass had the potential to become what it is today?
I never did, it grew gradually over the time and I could never anticipate where it would be today.
4. What has been your favourite piece you have seen in your time at John Pass?
Working here for so many years meant that there were some very significant points and pieces that passed through our hands – but selecting a favourite would be impossible as times and fashions change. It is all about progression and climbing the ladder. Milestones kept getting achieved through that time with an increase in diamond size and a change in watch styles and designs.
5. Who would play you in a film of your life?
6. If you could invite one celebrity, dead or alive, to dinner, who would it be and why?
Writer and explorer Ranulph Fiennes & comedian Norman Wisdom would be my chosen double act for the comedy factor and the exchange of stories.
7. Where is your favourite holiday destination? Why?
Nefyn on the North West coast of Wales. I’ve been visiting for many years and it has become a force of habit but remains a beautiful unspoilt corner of Wales.
The Team at John Pass