Pioneering cab firm boss dies aged 79

John Miller pictured just before his retirement in 2000
John Miller pictured just before his retirement in 2000
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The fourth generation owner of Preston’s oldest and largest taxi company has died at the age of 79.

John Joseph Miller worked for the family firm Miller’s Taxis from leaving school until his retirement in 2000.

His funeral will be at Holy Family, Ingol on Friday September 15 at 11am, followed by burial at St Mary’s Church in Barton.

Miller’s Taxis was founded in 1881 with horse-drawn carriages. It remained in the Miller family for 119 years until John sold it on his retirement at the age of 62.

It was an innovative company, introducing London black cabs to Preston, having the first charabanc in the North West, the first private ambulance and was also a funeral service.

John introduced the town’s first radio-controlled cab service and founded MC Executive cars for corporate work.

A family member said: “He remembered Miller’s Funeral Service and boasted that they ‘hatched, matched and dispatched’ people.

“They took the new baby and mother home from hospital, provided cars for the child’s wedding and finally more cars for their funeral.”

John was proud of Miller’s involvement in more than five Preston Guilds and at the 1992 Guild was honoured to lead both churches processions, wearing top hat and tails.

He was a founder member of Track Attack, which campaigned for a synthetic athletics track in Preston, leading to the inclusion of one at UCLan’s Sports Arena.

A committed Catholic, he was a former chairman of the Pastoral Church Council at Holy Family, Ingol, and a reader and eucharistic minister.

John grew up in Fulwood and spent 40 years of his adult life in Barton. He was a keen North End supporter. He played hockey for Preston and was a member of Fulwood Golf Club.