Staff from Tring’s oldest family business distraught after track death tragedy

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The family of a Tring business owner who died after being hit by a train say they are ‘dismayed’ to have lost someone who was admired by so many people.

Stephen Hockley Grace had been director of manufacturing firm Arrow Valves.

The business is based at the same High Street address as Tring’s oldest family business, hardware and ironmongers G. Grace and Son, which is owned by Stephen’s father Gilbert.

Stephen, who lived with his family off Shootersway in Berkhamsted, died two days before his 46th birthday on Wednesday last week after being hit by a train in Kempston Hardwick, near Bedford.

His father has released a statement on behalf of Stephen’s family.

It says: “The sudden death of an innovative young design engineer and businessman has left his family and friends shocked and dismayed over their tragic loss.

“Stephen Hockley Grace, the son of Gilbert and Julie Grace, and sister of Caroline, leaves behind his wife Laura, and three children Jordan, Sarah Jane and Zac, whom he adored.

“He owned a thriving local manufacturing company in Tring.

“The death is a terrible blow to the family, as he was admired by so many people. The family was not ready to give any explanation as to the circumstances leading to his death, and ask for privacy at this time.”

Police are not treating Stephen’s death as suspicious. An inquest was opened on Friday and a fuller hearing will be held by Bedford coroner David Morris in due course.

G. Grace and Son has been trading since 1750, and has been based at its current Tring High Street site since 1890.