John Gourley

By Rachael Rosewell

Published on Friday, October 14, 2016 - 14:00


John Gourley

John Gourley

ONE of the Island’s driving test examiners during the 1970s and 1980s, John Gourley, has died, aged 84.

Mr Gourley, formerly of Ash Lane, Gunville, was born on November 26, 1931, in Belfast, Northern Ireland, the youngest of four children.

After school, he began work at Mackies Engineering Belfast and married his first wife in 1955. The couple had a son, Brian.

Mr Gourley moved to England in 1963 to find work with London Transport, firstly driving and then teaching.

He married his second wife, Sylvia, in 1971 in St Albans and he qualified as a driving test examiner with the Department of Transport in 1972 .

The family moved to the IW in 1974, where Mr Gourley joined the team of driving test examiners, based in Newport. Many Island drivers would have passed through his hands over the years and he gained a reputation for being the strictest of examiners.

In his spare time, Mr Gourley was a keen ballroom dancer — winning many medals — a bowler and member of the IW Cine Club.

With his wife, he moved back to Belfast in 1992, where the couple were active in their local church.

Mr Gourley also enjoyed music, playing the organ at his church and at the Harmonie 282 Masonic Lodge, of which he was a member.

Following a short illness, he died at the Antrim area hospital on August 28.

Mr Gourley leaves his wife, son, grandson, Benjamin, and granddaughter, Rebecca.

His funeral service was held at Roselawn Crematorium, Crossna-creevy, Belfast, followed by a memorial service at Rathcoole Presbyterian Church, Newtonabbey.

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