Retiral removes last family link with local firm

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WELL-KNOWN Arbroath businessman and councillor Robert (Bob) Spink has announced his retiral from the board of R.R. Spink & Sons (Arbroath) Ltd., thus severing the last remaining direct family link with this long established local fish processing company.

Now part of the Salvesen Group of companies, R.R. Spink & Sons is a major supplier to M&S to which it provides a range of smoked fish products, mostly now trout and salmon, with some mackerel. It also supplies to most other supermarket chains and many wholesalers throughout the UK.

With a workforce of around 100 and a turnover of about £8.5 million, the company is a major employer in the Angus area and has always been firmly committed to Arbroath.

Mr Spink, now 72, said: “ Of course I am sad to leave what has been my life’s work for over the last 60 years, and I have seen many changes, some good, some not so good. I witnessed the heady, prosperous days of the 1960s/’70s when local landings were heavy and daily, with line-fishing, seine net, trawl, and all other types of fishing carried out from a healthy local fishing fleet.

“Whoever would have thought that in such a relatively short space of time it would all disappear, unlikely ever to return.

“We made the changes we were forced to, often painful, and made the transition from dependency on seafish to almost exclusively sustainable farmed species trout and salmon, indeed from smoking no trout at all at one time, we became the largest smoker of trout in the UK in just two years.”

He concluded: “My departure from the company is very amicable. I just feel I have at last done my bit.

“I wish Alistair Salvesen and all his team well, being confident our once family business is safe in their hands and safe in Arbroath.”