Christopher Seddon joined the family business as an apprentice bricklayer in 1959, and went on to take over the running of the business in 1982.
The £200m turnover business, which now has its head office in Bolton, was founded by Christopher’s grandfather John Seddon and great uncle George in Little Hulton, Salford, in 1897.
His son Jonathan took over as managing director in 2007, but Christopher remained active at the business until his final days.
He is survived by his wife Patricia, his three children, Nicola, Jamie and Jonathan, who are all now directors at the company, and eight grandchildren.
Last year he was awarded an MBE for his services to apprenticeships and local charities.
Jonathan Seddon said: "Dad’s commitment to both the company and the sector as a whole has been unwavering throughout his life. He loved what he did for a living and was proud of the way we did business. He took great joy in ensuring that next generation were given the opportunity to train and develop their skills and this will be his lasting legacy.”
Friends and former colleagues within the industry wishing to pay their respects to Christopher are asked to consider making a donation to Cancer Research UK or to the Christie Hospital in Manchester.