The Scottish Gamekeepers Association is sad to learn of the passing of long-time SGA member, Fred Taylor. Fred died suddenly after receiving treatment for cancer.
His funeral will take place on Tuesday 23rd October, 11.30am at Blacks Funeral Directors, Brechin, proceeding to Parkgrove crematorium at Friockheim.
Fred's own wishes were that Tweeds should be worn, if possible.
Please see also a tribute to Fred from Lord Dalhousie.
Fred Taylor (1948- 2012)
Fred died suddenly having been receiving treatment for cancer, he was being looked after at home by his wife Anne until the night before he died.
Born in the Glen (Glenesk) he spent virtually all his life there. After finishing school, as early as possible, he worked as a grouse beater, ponyman, shepherd and fencer before joining his brother Ab as a beatkeeper/stalker at Invermark in 1971. One of my father’s most difficult decisions was which brother to choose as head keeper in 1981 when Bert Osler retired.
Fred was known and respected by so many, both in his profession and in the wider world. So many people passed through Invermark as grouse beaters, ponymen, guns and stalkers in the Lodge and Fred earned the respect of them all. Wherever I go in the countryside people from all walks of life ask after him with genuine affection and, until this last year, I would say fine, and you could see the fond memories of his company in their faces.
Fred was a true man of the hill; he was born to it and, as a boy, admitted to staring out the classroom window and longing for the holidays. He had an enormous amount of knowledge, some learnt and much picked up by experience, and he passed this on to others with typical quiet generosity.
Those who knew him will all have their memories. Mine is lying next to him in the heather looking at a herd of stags, seeking out ones to shoot and ones that we could just admire.
The driving of grouse was also one of his great skills; he seemed to have a natural aptitude for it and made it look easy although this came from a lifetime’s experience. His understanding of the ground in different winds and conditions was uncanny and his natural gift of command meant, even on grouse days, he never had to raise his voice. What more can I say but ‘goodbye dear friend and jealous guardian of Invermark’.
The sun went doon behind the hill,
The moor grew dim and stern;
And soon an utter darkness fell
O’er mountain rock and burn.
In memory of Fred Taylor, written by Lord Dalhousie, October 2012.