Meet the new owner of Airth Pharmacy

The “slow transfer” of ownership at a popular village pharmacy may have taken a dozen years but now the vital community resource is ready to help even more customers.

By James Trimble
Tuesday, 2nd June 2020, 8:30 am
Updated Tuesday, 2nd June 2020, 8:30 am

John Porter started managing Airth Pharmacy, in Shore Road, back in 2008 and now, thanks to funding from Unity Trust Bank, he has been able to buy up remaining shares in the business and has sole responsibility for the premises after the retirement of the former owner John Currie.

He said: “I was employed to manage the pharmacy by the owner – who also owned three other premises – but at some point there was always going to be a slow transfer of ownership and that arrived on April 1 – on April Fool’s Day during a global pandemic.

“There’s no real change because the previous owner allowed me to run it as if it was my own pharmacy, but it’s nice to be able to enjoy the freedom to do more without having to worry about spending someone else’s money.

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The new owner of Airth Pharmacy John Porter

“We operate in a commercially successful way, but with a social conscience, and Unity Trust Bank’s ethical lending policy was most closely aligned with the way we run our pharmacy.

“Their support has been invaluable.”

John said he now plans to increase the services the pharmacy offers and is excited at the prospect of being able to help even more people in the community.

“We want to expand our checks for diabetes and do more of that. We also did blood pressure checks and asthma initiatives and now I own the pharmacy we will be doing more of these things.”

Of course this is all happening under the long shadow cast by the COVID-19 crisis.

John said: “We actually started warning people about coronavirus back in February, saying this wasn’t just a problem for people in China, it will be coming here too. The first couple of weeks in March were chaos after the doctors’ surgeries started closing.

“I’ve never experienced anything like it in 30 years of being a pharmacist. Then this was followed by two or three weeks of tricky situations, but the last two or three weeks have been relatively normal.

“The people of Airth have been absolutely fantastic throughout it all.”