Family and friends mourn the sudden loss of Douglas Gratton.

TRIBUTES have been paid to well known Barnstaple butcher Douglas Gratton following his sudden death.

A familiar figure in the town, Dougie as he was known, retired in 2007 from running the family business Gratton’s Butchers in Butchers Row.

He died aged 69 at North Devon District Hospital on Tuesday of last week after being treated for breathing problems and leaves his wife Margaret and children Jane, Andrew and Mark plus six grandchildren.

This year the family were set to celebrate having been in Butchers Row for 60 years after Dougie’s father opened the business there in 1954.

“He was a lovely caring guy and he will be sadly missed,” said Jane on behalf of the family.

Dougie was born in London but lived almost his entire life in Barnstaple and was also well known for his involvement with the Barnstaple Open Shove Ha’Penny League and had served as its president for three years.

His funeral will take place at St Peter and St Mary Magdalene Church just behind Butchers Row at 2pm on Wednesday, May 28, followed by a wake at Barnstaple Hotel on Braunton Road.

All are welcome to attend, with a request for family flowers only, but a collection will be taken for the respiratory department at NDDH.