A LIVESTOCK auctioneer at Hexham and Northern Marts is retiring after 50 years there.

Trevor Simpson first joined Hexham Mart in January 1972 as an auctioneer's clerk.

He then worked his way up the ranks to become a senior auctioneer.

Hexham Courant: Trevor first joined Hexham Mart in 1972.Trevor first joined Hexham Mart in 1972.

But today (Thursday, May 26), on his 70th birthday, Trevor is retiring.

"I've thoroughly enjoyed my time here," said Trevor, who lives in County Durham.

"Yes there's been some bad times, for example when foot-and-mouth hit, but there have been some very good times as well.

"You meet so many people here, from all over the county. I've made some great friends."

He added: "It's been a privilege to sell the stock in this area."

Trevor, who said he had some great mentors over the years, has also been influential for his younger colleagues.

Last year, Jack Walton, auctioneer at Hexham and Northern Marts, told the Courant after he sold at Kelso for the first time in the Hexham Mart Bluefaced Leicester Ring that the experience and advice that Trevor passed on to him was "invaluable".

Trevor's colleagues from Hexham and Northern Marts threw him a retirement party last week.

"It was tremendous," said Trevor. "I couldn't believe what they did."

As for his plans for retirement, Trevor said his plans include spending a bit more time at his place in Spain, potentially taking up golf again, and helping out at his stepson's farm.

He added: "I'll still be round on mart days occasionally!"