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Tribute to Bill Barrie

It is my sad duty to inform fellow Club Members of the passing of Bill Barrie.

Bill passed away peacefully on Sunday 22nd October after fighting a long, magnificent battle against prostate cancer and a recent illness caused by complications following a recent operation.

William Wright Barrie was born 22nd May 1945 in Bellshill near Glasgow and grew up in Muirhead.  After studying medicine at Glasgow University (chosen as he could fit lectures around his cycling timetable) where he was also president of the Student Union, Bill qualified as a doctor and subsequently had a very successful and rewarding career as a Consultant Surgeon. After working in both Glasgow and Buffalo State New York, Bill became Clinical Director of Surgery at Leicester General Hospital.  Career highlights include being a pioneer of minimal invasive surgical technique and introducing Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy to Leicester in 1991.

Bill lived to cycle. Having been given an old bike by a neighbour at an early age, he spent his teens riding come rain or shine in the Campsies, Highlands and beyond. One of his skills was brewing up a ‘can’ mid bike ride while riding in soggy wet wool clothes. He was a formidable youth club cyclist and was particularly proud of coming first in the 1965 University Athletics Union Cycling Championships Hill Climb, with his team taking First in the same event.

Bill had cycling written through his veins and joined the WVCC more than 20 years ago.  He quite quickly became well known and active in the club. A very good Time Trialist, he won the Veterans Championship many times, served for years on the Club Committee and was always available for Marshalling duty.  He was most supportive of new cyclists and novice Time Trialists and was particularly encouraging to young riders who wished to compete in the sport. Not only did he lead from the front, woe betide anyone who half wheeled him, he always pushed everyone to do better – there were no hills only “slopes”.  He was also kind and generous with his time, support and advice.

I have, along with others, shared many great experiences with Bill over the years; Cycling, Skiing, Camping trips and countless wining and dining.

Bill’s first wife Lucille sadly passed away in 2002. But he later found happiness again with – and remarried – Sheelagh, who he leaves along with sons Euan and Neil and stepdaughter Kym, and grandchildren.

The Barrie family have expressed their wish that fellow members of the WVCC are welcome to attend Bill’s funeral.

Details will be forthcoming.

Steve Alden.



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