Much loved Bolsover food hero John Jaquest passes away

Pauline and John Jaquest.
Pauline and John Jaquest.

A Derbyshire Food Hero who founded Bolsover’s famous award-winning Jaquest Food Specialists has died.

John Jaquest - crowned as the Derbyshire Food and Drink Awards Food Hero in 2015 - passed away aged 68 after suffering with diabetes and a liver condition.

The smoked meat, fish, and fine food specialist launched his business in 1989 with wife Pauline and clocked up dozens of awards before handing over the reins in 2014 to a new owner.

Widow Pauline, 67, said: “John would do anything for anyone and would never want anything in return. We’re all devastated and so many people have been phoning and sending so many cards it all stands as testament to how much people thought of John.”

Mr Jaquest had been ill for nine months and was admitted to hospital on December 15 last year and died on January 6.

The couple’s business boasted around 50 Guild of Fine Foods Great Taste Awards and became a regular attraction at the Derbyshire Food and Drinks Awards.

Jaquest’s was based on Station Road before moving to Bolsover Business Park and developed a reputation for supplying top hotels and restaurants and for exhibiting nationwide including the House of Commons.

Darley Dale-born Mr Jaquest also received a 2010 Local Food Hero award which he accepted in honour of son Stephen who died in 2008.

Despite retiring, Mr Jaquest was again crowned 2015 Local Food Hero in November, last year, and was presented with a Derbyshire Food and Drink Lifetime Achievement Award.

The 68-year-old appeared on Channel 4’s Secret Supper Club and worked with famous chefs James Martin, Jamie Oliver and Nick Buckingham. His family is considering opening a bistro in Mr Jaquest’s name and donating money to Buxton College.

A burial will be held at Oxcroft Lane Cemetery, Bolsover, on January 29, followed by a service from midday, at Ken Gregory’s funeral directors, on Station Road. Mr Jaquest leaves a daughter Joanne, son-in-law Alexis Malong, granddaughter Alexiana, sister Maz and his father Roy, 92.