Obituaries: Ian Rawnsley

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The funeral service for Charles (Ian) Rawnsley, of Woolsthorpe by Colsterworth, took place at Thistleton Church with about 100 friends and family in attendance. Cremation at Grantham followed.

Ian was born in Leeds, West Yorkshire and then moved to a village near Skipton. He gained a City and Guild in paint chemistry and taught at night school while also supervising a workforce of 12 men at his father’s painting and decorating company.

In 1962 he enrolled at Leeds College of Art studying interior design and in 1965 entered a post graduate year at the Royal College of Art in London. In 1966 he joined BBC TV as an assistant designer, working on Top of the Pops and Z Cars to name but a few. Ian was soon promoted to designer and worked on Till Death Us Do Part, Dr Who, Butterflies, Liver Birds, All Gas and Gaiters, light entertainment shows with Cliff Richard, Dusty Springfield, Elton John, Neil Diamond, James Last Orchestra, and Stan Kenton. Best of all, Ian was principal designer for the sets on To the Manor Born and Some Mother’s do ‘ave Em. In the late 1980s Ian became one of three chief designers and for a few years before his early retirement in 1992 he was head of the design department with a staff of about 180.

In 1993 Ian and his wife Carol moved to Thistleton in Rutland where he enjoyed fly fishing and pheasant shooting. For 11 years he led the parish meeting in Thistleton and worked hard to successfully stop hundreds of HGV lorries going through the village daily. He also managed to request a government inquiry into preventing the opening of a new quarry on the outskirts of Thistleton - another success story.

In 2009 Ian and Carol moved to Woolsthorpe by Colsterworth, where he died suddenly and unexpectedly of a ruptured aortic aneurism. He leaves Carol, his wife of 47 years, daughter Sarah, granddaughter Lola, son-in-law Graham, sister Cynthia and brother John Rawnsley (a well-known opera singer).