The family of the "inspirational" boss who created the Peaky Blinders chain of bars but died unexpectedly last year have finally finished their dad's final project.

John Sinclair, 63, died in hospital in December last year after suffering a pulmonary embolism following surgery a month earlier.

His family were left "devastated" by the dad's unexpected death as he had been recovering well and told them he would be back home soon.

Receive newsletters with the latest news, sport and what's on updates from the Liverpool ECHO by signing up here

John's wife, Melanie, said her husband was in the middle of creating his dream project before be died, and now his wife and children have pulled together finish what he started.

Melanie told the ECHO : "We're alright, we're all still devastated but what can you do - he was such a massive presence in our life and he's gone.

"Before he got ill last year he wanted to go on a different tact, more like a wine bar and food place.

"We decided to open a bar in Autumn and John wanted to call it Arthur's after my dad.

"We started working on it but then he died and we all sort of closed down.

"We got a grip of ourselves about three months ago and said look, this is what he wanted to do, this was his last project and wish - let's see it through for him and that's what we've done.

Keep up to date with what's on in your area by entering your postcode below

"He wouldn't have wanted us to just sit back and do nothing. Even if we didn't open Arthur's he would have would have wanted us to carry on with the Peaky Blinders. Set his family up for a good future.

"Hopefully we've made him proud - it looks amazing."

John Sinclair was working on opening Arthur's when he died last year
John Sinclair was working on opening Arthur's when he died last year

Arthur's of Aughton, which is in Town Green, opened officially on Thursday, June 10.

Melanie explained it was always her husband's dream to open a high end bar and restaurant based on a place the couple visited in New York over 20-years ago.

Melanie said: "John proposed to me in New York in a bar called PJ Clarke's about 20 years ago and he loved it so much - it was a timeless place.

"And when we started Arthur's he said I want it to look like PJ Clarke's - which is like a sort of gentleman's club with beautiful panelling and Chesterfields and velvet, and very rich tones. Big beautiful chandeliers - the finishing touches are beautiful."

John Sinclair wanted Arthur's to look like P J Clarke's, the high class bar and restaurant in New York where he had proposed to Melanie over 20 years ago
John Sinclair wanted Arthur's to look like P J Clarke's, the high class bar and restaurant in New York where he had proposed to Melanie over 20 years ago

Melanie said the couple's children pulled together to make John's final wish a reality, despite the heartbreak they were still going through after their dad's sudden loss.

Daughter Carley, 40, posted on her Facebook page the night before Arthur's officially opened: "Finally we open the doors to Arthur’s tomorrow. Yikes this has been an emotional one, the last one we all did together with you Dad.

Melanie holding baby Bobby with two of her children, Joseph and Carley
Melanie holding baby Bobby with two of her children, Joseph and Carley

"Hope we made you proud on this one it looks quality as you would always say. The legacy lives on always in our hearts we will raise a glass for you tonight and I’ll try not to cry".

Melanie added: "He'd be so proud, he would be so thrilled - it would be show time tonight if he was here.

"It's turned out better than I thought. I'm amazed with how it looks but we've put blood, sweat and tears into it."