Obituary: Malcom Allan, Camelon butcher who built a business empire

0Business legend Malcolm Allan who died age 96 on March 12
0Business legend Malcolm Allan who died age 96 on March 12

The man who built the biggest butchers business in Falkirk district has died. Malcolm Allan was 96.

At its peak the firm owned 20 shops and employed nearly 200 people. It also had outlets at the Gyle in the east and Milngavie in the west and the Malcolm Allan Braveheart brand was sold in Harrods and Selfridges in London and its products served up in some of the top hotels and restaurants in the UK.

The previous November, Mr Allan’s contribution to the local economy had been recognised when he was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award at The Falkirk Herald’s business awards

In the late 1980s, and recognising the growth of supermarkets and a change in shopping trends, Malcolm Allan and Sons switched its focus from retail to wholesale, investing in a production and distribution centre at Tamfourhill which employed 150.

In February last year, and celebrating 60 years in the industry, he invited the Scottish Government’s Rural Affairs Minister Richard Lochhead to officially open Malcolm Allan’s new headquarters in Larbert’s Central Business Park.

The previous November, Mr Allan’s contribution to the local economy and business community had been recognised when he was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award at The Falkirk Herald’s business awards.

Born in February 1919, Malcolm and his four sisters and two brothers were raised at The Hedges in Camelon.

After completing his schooling he worked in his uncle’s butchers shop, J&F McCrae’s in his home village.

In 1948, while serving with the Royal Air Force as a despatch rider and driver, Malcolm married his sweetheart Agnes (Nancy) McMurchie.

In 1954 he branched out on his own, opening his first butcher shop in Bonnybridge.Over the next 30 years and on the back of its reputation for being a family business which provided value for money, the business steadily grew.

Malcolm and Nancy’s two sons, James (65) and Gordon (60) are now joint managing directors of the company and Malcolm’s grandchildren, James’ son Ross and daughter Laura and Gordon’s son Stewart are already involved and following in their grandad’s footsteps.

Mr Allan died peacefully in Bo’ness Care Home on March 12. A funeral service was held in Falkirk Trinity Church last Friday.