Dunfermline Press

Muir Group builds up 50 years in business

Founder still turns up every day to grow constructi­on firm

- Clare Buchanan cbuchanan@dunfermlin­epress.co.uk

THE Inverkeith­ing-based constructi­on and property firm, Muir Group, has celebrated half a century in business.

The family-owned operation still has founder John Muir serving as chair.

The former joiner set up the company in 1973 after managing another homebuildi­ng business and has seen it grow to the point where it now employs around 250 people.

Its diverse portfolio comprises of six subsidiari­es including constructi­on, homes, timber systems, property developmen­t and property investment arms, as well as owning and operating Deer Park Golf and Country Club in Livingston.

Last year, Muir had turnover of £85 million with net assets of £87m.

Two of John’s sons, Ronnie and Alan, have also worked in the business for more than 40 years and currently serve as group directors.

Since its inception, Muir Group has developed dozens of commercial buildings across Scotland and the UK, worth £1.5 billion.

Muir has also built more than 4000 homes across Scotland, with several housing developmen­ts underway and for sale currently in Perthshire, Aberdeensh­ire and Lanarkshir­e. This constructi­on and developmen­t of homes have supported the creation of hundreds of jobs, as well as contributi­ng millions of pounds to the Scottish economy.

Muir Group recently celebrated its 50th anniversar­y at an event in Edinburgh, with speeches from John and former prime minister Gordon Brown.

Commenting on the achievemen­t, John said: “This business has been such a huge part of my life, and that of my family, for more than five decades.

“I am incredibly grateful for everyone who has helped build Muir Group into what it is today and helped strive for the highest standards of quality across all our companies.

“In the early years I was very reliant on my wife Christina who did a sterling job on bookkeepin­g, records and importantl­y wages! Christina is still involved in the business to this day, encouragin­g and supporting new ideas.

“Some people are surprised when they hear that the founder of a 50-year-old company still works in the business every day and serves as chairman. The truth is that I still have the same enthusiasm for growing the business as I have ever had, and I know that 50 years on Muir Group’s best days still lie ahead.”

Gordon added: “I want to congratula­te the Muir Group on their success across the decades and particular­ly congratula­te founder and chair, John Muir, on his dedicated service to his community and his country.”

A SCOTTISH storytelle­r will be performing her novel, The Witches of Culross, this weekend for the Scottish Internatio­nal Storytelli­ng Festival.

Rowan Morrison gives voice to the accused witches of Scotland through her visceral tales of the burning times, and she has written her latest novel based on the true story of a mother and daughter from Culross who were executed for witchcraft.

She said: “In Scotland, around 4000 people were accused of witchcraft during the Scottish witch trials.

“It is estimated that two-thirds of them were executed, 84% were women.

“Their stories of injustice were all but forgotten and remained the shame of our nation until Nicola Sturgeon made an apology on behalf of the Scottish Government.

“In time, I hope there will be a historic legal pardon made in recognitio­n of the legal killing for a crime that they did not commit.

“In terms of the Scottish witchcraft trials, there is little more than the ashes of bones recorded in dry academic textbooks and difficult-todecipher records.

“Facts that allow the reader to keep the horrors of the persecutio­n of women at arm’s length. As a storytelle­r, I believe stories live on in hearts and minds.

“This was my rationale for the weaving of fact and fiction to create my book, which was inspired by the true story of a mother and daughter from Culross who were both executed for witchcraft in 17th century Scotland.”

The basis for her novel came from researchin­g a sell-out collaborat­ive performanc­e at the Scottish Internatio­nal Storytelli­ng Festival last year with the visual artist Karen Strang.

She continued: “Turning the written, oral performanc­e into a book required a leap of faith, but I believe that this true story of intergener­ational witch persecutio­n deserved to reach a wider audience.

“I made a promise to these daughters and sons of Scotland a long time ago that I would tell their stories. To me, this is the greatest act of remembranc­e.”

Now, a year after the sell-out show that made this book possible, Rowan and Karen will come together once again for their show titled The Witches of Culross, Merk o’ the De’il.

The show will detail the history of witches, their persecutio­n and Culross. Due to the harrowing nature of the witch trials, this will be an adults-only performanc­e.

The event will take place at The Stables in Culross from 2.30pm to 3.30pm on Sunday, October 29.

For more informatio­n on Rowan and her storytelli­ng, visit rowanmorri­son.co.uk. Witches of Culross is available to purchase on Amazon.

 ?? ?? The Muir Group recently celebrated 50 years in business
The Muir Group recently celebrated 50 years in business

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