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Ken Davy leads tributes to SimplyBiz MD Ian Thorneycroft

SimplyBiz managing director Ian Thorneycroft died last night following a battle with cancer.

Thorneycroft had been on leave since February 2009 and hoped to return to work this Spring.

SimplyBiz chairman Ken Davy says: “It is with enormous sadness and a very heavy heart that I have to inform you that Ian Thorneycroft, our much loved and sadly missed managing director, passed away peacefully in his sleep yesterday evening.

“For the last 15 months Ian has fought a heroic battle against a particularly dreadful form of cancer. Throughout it all his positive attitude, humour and determination have been an inspiration to all, not just those of us who had the privilege of knowing him but to the whole of the financial services sector.  

“Today’s news coming only a few weeks after Ian and his wife Judith were given the hope that all had been cleared and barely two weeks since that good news was so cruelly reversed is hard for all of us to take or even comprehend. We all have our own very special memories of Ian and he will live in our hearts forever.

“All our thoughts are now with Judith and the family at this incredibly difficult time.”

In November, Thorneycroft wrote a rallying cry to advisers in Money Marketing to bring back pride in the industry as part of a return to traditional values.

Thorneycroft joined financial services in the mid seventies as a trainee manager in Nationwide Building Society, then called the Co-operative Permanent.

In 1993 he headed up the society’s independent financial advice subsidiary and in 1996 he moved to Legal & General to become operations director for the broker division.

After a spell as member relations director of the DBS network, from 1999 to 2002, Thorneycroft was appointed founding managing director of SimplyBiz in 2002.

He was also a director of the Association of Independent Financial Advisers and sat on various RDR committees.

Davy says: “Ian was passionately committed to helping the IFA sector flourish, and as managing director of SimplyBiz he took customer service to new levels of excellence, including endeavouring to ring every single new member who joined.”

Aifa director general Chris Cummings says: “It is with great sadness that Aifa learnt Ian Thorneycroft had passed away. Ian was an outstanding council member and a strong advocate for independent financial advice. He will be missed by all those who knew him and the industry is the poorer for his passing.

“Those who knew Ian well will miss his sense of humour, spirit of adventure, good sense, and his ability to get to the crux of an issue. Our thoughts go out to his family at this difficult time.”


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There are 16 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Stuart Alexander 17th May 2010 at 12:21 pm

    As someone who had many dealings with Ian over the years, I am saddened to hear this news. He was always great to deal with as a client, through his great sense of humour, fun loving attitude and his passion for the Intermediary market. He will sadly missed by many.

  2. Ewart Matthias 17th May 2010 at 12:34 pm

    This is truly sad news and a great shock.

    I had the priveledge of knowing Ian at the time I was looking at going directly authorised and found him to be a man of immense integrity.

    This is a very sad day for us all and our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife Judith and their family at this time, not forgetting of course his colleagues at Simply Biz.

  3. Stephen Gazard 17th May 2010 at 1:58 pm

    Ian was a true professional and great advocate for our industry …. he will be sorely missed as a good friend, confidant and sponsor of my early career in financial services. My thoughts are with Judith and the family.

  4. I am deeply sad to hear this news. Ian was truly one of the nicest people I ever met in financial services. A real inspiration and someone I always enjoyed speaking with. It’s a terribly sad day for financial services but also for the world because my goodness we need more Ian’s.

  5. Extremely sad news. He really was an inspiration to all and was so courageous with his battle. He will be sorely missed. Love and thoughts to Judith and the family

  6. Simon Mansell 17th May 2010 at 2:39 pm

    SimplyBiz is itself a suitable epithet to its former managing director Ian Thorneycroft. The best we can all hope for is that some element of us lives on in our families and our business activities.

  7. I am deeply shocked and extremely sad to learn of Ian’s death.
    Ian was a very human being and, of course, he made an enormous contribution to our profession.
    I will always remember Ian for his positive attitude towards financial services services and and its practitioners. More particularly I remember him for giving so much time sharing views. His were always interesting, perceptive and challenging and he always shared his infectious enthusiasm. I know that he treated the newest and youngest of recruits the same as people he had known for years.
    My condolences to Judith and all their family and many friends. Ian will be much missed.

  8. Andrew Sellers 17th May 2010 at 2:41 pm

    What can I say?

    Ian was one of the great supporters of our business, and such a lovely man. So sad to hear of his death, but he will not be forgotten.

    With my love to all his family and colleagues

    Andrew xx

  9. This is truly dreadfully sad news.

    A guy so full of life and fun, ian was so passionate about the industry and will be a massive loss.

    Thoughts are with his wife and all the staff at SimplyBiz who I know will be devastated.

    RIP Ian, you will bw missed.

  10. David Shelton 17th May 2010 at 3:08 pm

    This is very sad news – Ian was a true professional and he will be greatly missed – Ken Davy’s comments are a reflection of how many people will feel on this sad day.

  11. Peter Ransome 17th May 2010 at 3:34 pm

    Greatly shocked to read of Ian’s death.

    It was only a couple of weeks ago that friends and colleagues were anticipating his return to work.

    He will be missed for his integrity and sincerity.

    My thoughts and prayers are with his family.

  12. I had the pleasure of working with Ian when he was MD for the Nationwide IFA arm. A true gent and will be sadly missed.

    A great loss to our industry.

  13. IFA Defence Union 17th May 2010 at 4:11 pm

    He will be missed because he was one of the few people who took a real interest in all things IFA.

  14. I used to work at Nationwide with him and will always remember his warmth and sense of humour. He will be missed sorely, but time is a great healer

  15. Sue Ashton, Abqaiq, Saudi Arabia 19th May 2010 at 1:40 pm

    I was Ian’s PA at DBS & my fondest memory of him was when our Department danced to Grease Lightening at the Christmas party. He was always good fun when out but very professional at work. He will be missed by all who knew him.

  16. Susan Brassey 24th May 2010 at 2:54 pm

    Just heard the news about Ian and was very sorry to learn of his death from cancer.

    I met Ian at several DBS meetings when I was a member before Sesame Network.I also met him again when I was thinking of joining Simply Biz and attended a couple of seminars and Ian was present at these.

    He was always a warm and friendly person who made you welcome and always available to help.

    Ian will be very much missed within the IFA community.

    Condolences to his wife and family.

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