1863 Born the son of William Esplen
Educated at Liverpool College
Trained at Fawcett, Preston and Co., Liverpool.
1887 Joined his father in the firm of Wm. Esplen & Sons, Consultant Architects and Marine and Refrigerating Engineers, of Liverpool, subsequently incorporated as Esplen & Sons, Ltd.
1914 On the death of his father, he was appointed Chairman
In addition to his commercial work Sir John held the position of Chief Technical Adviser in the Ministry of Shipping and Director of Ship Purchase.
In recognition of his services to the nation, the K.B.E. was conferred upon him.