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Nairn's 'Lollipop Legend' Willie Pirie retires after 17 years at the age of 85 from his job at Millbank Primary School


By Louise Glen

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William Pirie, and his dog Buddy.
William Pirie, and his dog Buddy.

A school crossing patrol operator has retired from his job in Nairn after 17 years in the job.

But at 85, William Pirie, who has lived in Nairn for more than 50 years, he is not slowing down any with a list of jobs to do around his house.

Mr Pirie held his position on the route to Millbank Primary School over the years as his own grandchild attended the school.

Known to the community as Willie, he hung up his lollipop shortly after the start of term, where hundreds of comments and retirement wishes flooded in from the community.

Many well-wishers spoke about Mr Pirie's unwavering service in all weathers and his Jack Russell companions Bandit, and currently Buddy.

Mr Pirie said his intention was to remain in his role until his youngest grandson, Scott Woods, had left Nairn Academy and he can now spend more time with his great grandson, Angus.

Mr Pirie said: "I haven't slowed down at all, I am painting the house at the moment, and I know the wife has a list of jobs for me still to do.

"My dad was 85 when he retired as well. We are made of good stuff."

After the news of his retirement was shared on social media, one well wisher wrote, “Enjoy Mr. Pirie. We always smiled over on our way to school, you and your wee best pal.”

Nairn resident June Ross Reid wrote, “Oh gee whiz Willie, your another Nairn legend retiring.

"You always looked out for my mum when she had dementia.

"Enjoy your time to yourself it will never be the same on that corner doll."

Mr Pirie thanked everyone for their support, cards and gifts.

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