Newtyle man Jim Pirie, who until only a few years ago was Britain’s oldest working butcher, has died at the age of 91.
Born in the Perthshire village of Stanley in June 1919, he started work as a butcher in 1933 aged 14 and only finally hung up his apron at the age of 87.
Since 1963 he had run his own business in Newtyle, first in North Street and then after his son Alan joined the business in 1965 from premises in Church Street.
During his working life Mr Pirie amassed no fewer than 131 UK and international awards — with the highlight coming in 2005 when the business won the Scottish Sausage Championship and Scottish Haggis Championship.
The Pirie family business in Newtyle has expanded over the years to include a grocery outlet and the village post office.
Mr Pirie’s career started with him working in shops in Crieff and Stanley. He was conscripted to the RAF before the outbreak of the second world war and served in England and on the Forth.
During this latter posting he met Janet, who lived in Dunfermline, and they were married in 1946.
He was a keen sportsman and in his younger days Mr Pirie played badminton in the Crieff and Strathmore leagues. He was a regular curler and was an honorary president of Kirkinch and Nevay Curling Club.
Angling, however, was his first sporting love and he fished not only on local lochs and rivers including the Tay but all over Scotland.
Until recently a highlight of his year was an annual trip to Halkirk in Caithness to fish the Thurso.
Mr Pirie is survived by son Alan, daughter-in-law Norma and grandchildren Catriona and Gordon.Published in the Courier : 11.03.11
Published online : 13.03.11 @ 01.45pm