Tributes to top butcher, Des
A RENOWNED Peterborough butcher, known for making some of the best “bangers” around, has died.
Crowland sausage-maker Des Barker passed away shortly after being diagnosed with bowel cancer.
The 74-year-old of Postland Road, Crowland, was born in Whittlesey in 1935 and, after leaving school at the age of 15, went to work for butchers A.W Parkinson in Gedney Hill.
He quickly acquired the skills of the trade and before long he became a partner in the business.
In 1964, Mr Barker with a partner found an empty shop in West Street, Crowland and they decided, to set up their own butchers called Parkinson’s of Crowland.
His mouth-watering pork sausages were made using a secret recipe using only tip top ingredients – and no additives.
Banger-barmy fans would travel from as far as Buckinghamshire, Kent and York just to get their hands Mr Barker’s prized sausages.
Paying tribute to the popular sausage-maker, his wife of 51 years, Margaret (67), said: “Des’s motto about his sausages was ‘always eaten, never beaten’.
“He entered various competitions, most of which he won. “In 1997 his fresh Lincolnshire sausages were recognised in national magazine, Country Living. He also appeared on TV in a programme called Out To Lunch With Brian Turner.
“Not only was he a great butcher, he was also a terrific entrepreneur and spent a lot of time raising money for various charities.”
The couple met at a dance in Palmerstone Road, Woodston, Peterborough, when Margaret was just 16 and they married at St Mark’s Church, in Lincoln Road two years later.
They went on to have four children: Neil, Karen, Philippa and Catherine and eight grandchildren.
Mr Barker’s other love was golf and he would spend most of his spare time at Spalding Golf Course.
Mrs Barker, who did the accounts for the butcher’s shop, added: “Des was a fantastic husband and father – a fantastic guy all round.” His funeral was held at Crowland Abbey on June 2.
POPULAR: Award-winning butcher Des Barker, of Parkinson’s of Crowland, has died at the age of 74.