TRIBUTES have been paid to a top St Helens businessman found dead in Majorca.
Entrepreneur Tony Ryan, pictured above, 70, who formed St Helens Glass back in 1970 with a six-strong workforce, was pronounced dead in Cas Catala on February 28.
Mr Ryan, a former Saints director who once had designs on buying the club, was described as “a lovely man” by club legend Alex Murphy.
Alex, pictured right, told the Reporter: “Tony was a lovely man who did a lot for St Helens and had lots of friends here. He will be very sadly missed.
“Tony was on the board at St Helens when I was coach and was a great man to work for. He liked his rugby and, at one point, even thought about about buying the club.”
From humble beginnings, Mr Ryan’s St Helens Glass firm went on to become one of the UK’s top double glazing companys - eventually opening up a multi-storey office on Corporation Street in the town centre.
Many people will still remember the firm’s catchy advertising slogan “St Helens Glass has the class”.
After selling up about 10 years ago, Mr Ryan moved to live in Majorca with his wife and, on occasion, was known to entertain guests on his yacht.
Alex Murphy added: “Tony’s death is a massive, tragic loss. I still can’t believe it. Obviously he sold St Helens Glass and moved out to Majorca - but he still has lots of friends over here.
“I believe his wife is now coming back home and will be bringing Tony’s ashes with her. There will probably be a memorial service here in the next couple of weeks.”
A spokesman for the Foreign Office said: “We are able to confirm the death of a British national in Cas Catala, Majorca, on February 28. We are providing consular assistance to the next of kin.”