Weaste Cemetery

Biographies of people buried between 1950 & 59

John Binns (1881 - 1956)

John Binns was Mayor of Saford City Council in 1945/6 and was the proprieter of the Victoria Café and Restaurant on Eccles Old Road.


John was born in Salford in 1881 and was the only son of George W. and Ellen Binns. He had four older sisters named Esther, Clara, Ellen and Emily. He was educated at Christ Church Upper School and entered into apprenticeship in the building trade. He went to evening classes at Salford Royal Technical College and gained honours in a Diploma of building and construction. He became a builder and then went into corn milling, where he again studied and graduated in that profession.


In 1945, he took another change in direction when he designed and built the Victoria Café and Restaurant on Eccles Old Road, near the corner of Victoria Road. He resided nearby, in Victoria Road. In religion he was a staunch Anglican and represented the Manchester Diocese on the National Assembly of the Church of England.


John Binns' political career began in 1925 when he was aged 44 and won Weaste Ward for the Conservatives. He became Chairman of the Building and Development Committee and member of the Art Gallery, Libraries, Parks and Cemeteries Committee, as well as the Health, Mayor's and Purchasing Committees. He was also Deputy Chairman of the Manchester and District Regional Planning Committee. On 16th June 1944, (just after the D-Day landings to liberate a war-torn Europe) and at the age of 63, he received the nomination from the anti-Socialist Group, to become Mayor of Salford. He was also made an Alderman in that year. However, in 1945, on the last day of his Mayoralty, the Labour Party swept to power in Salford, and they sacked all the Conservative Aldermen, including John Binns. He stormed out of the Council Chamber before hearing the customary vote of thanks for his year as Mayor. He stood successfully for Councillor in 1947 and stepped down in 1951.


John Binns concentrated on his café business, but in 1954 he suffered a terrible illness, which resulted in both his legs being amputated. He made a good recovery and continued working in a wheelchair. It was shortly after doing his usual morning work at the café on 7th February 1956, that John Binns collapsed and died at his home in Victoria Road. He was 74 years of age and left a widow, Lily, a son and a daughter. Lily died on 23rd April 1965, aged 84, and is buried with him at Weaste Cemetery.