End of an era for Shaky’s Plaice

George Hamill
George Hamill

The owner of a much-loved fish-van will be serving his last piece of haddock this Saturday as he retires from the business he set-up 30 years ago.

George Hamill will pay an emotional farewell to ‘Shaky’s Plaice’, based in the carpark at Sainsbury’s in Kirkintilloch.

George started out in a shop in what is now the Herald’s office in Townhead.

The fish van made headlines in July last year when Sainsbury’s bosses refused to renew George’s lease for the patch of the carpark.

Loyal customers set up a petition which attracted hundreds of signatures, while many also vowed to boycott the store.

However, the retail giants had a change of heart and gave George a six month extension of his lease.

George (66) says he is now ready to retire. He said: “When I was told the lease wouldn’t be renewed I was going to be retiring soon, but it was the customers who started the petition and I thought they were right enough.

“I’m feeling a bit sad to think the caravan will be going away. I’ve loved the work, the customers and the banter.”

Customers will be pleased to know that George’s son Mark will be taking over the business and opening a new shop - The Wee Fish Market - in Townhead later this month.

George added: “My wife Anne will be working there and it means the service will continue for customers.

“Sainsbury’s have been smashing and extended the lease until the shop opens. I know decision not to renew the lease was being made by head office.

“I would like to thank all the customers for their support over the years.”