'I'm not ready to retire!' The 99 year old shop worker who won't stop

·4-min read
Ninety-nine-year-old David Flucker is still working a four day a week at St Columba's Hospice Charity Shop in Edinburgh. (SWNS)
Ninety-nine-year-old David Flucker is still working a four day a week at St Columba's Hospice Charity Shop in Edinburgh. (SWNS)

A 99-year-old charity shop volunteer has no plans to retire - because working helps keep him young and he 'couldn’t sit at home doing nothing'.

David Flucker, from Balgreen, Edinburgh, has been working at the St Columba's Hospice shop in Edinburgh for nearly three years – despite his commute involving a 20-minute walk and two buses.

The grandad of seven works four days a week helping to sort through donations and creating the window display, but the part of the job he particularly enjoys is speaking to the customers .

While his friends and family have questioned why he doesn’t retire, Flucker says he isn’t ready to sit at home doing nothing all day and hopes to work for as long as he can.

And having overcome COVID last year, he says he has no plans for slowing down.

“I have been working at the shop for nearly three years, four days a week," Flucker explains. 

“I do everything from sorting through the donations, doing the window display and helping out with repairs.

“I really enjoy all aspects of it, and I love getting to talk to the customers."

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Flucker says he has no plans to retire just yet. (SWNS)
Flucker says he has no plans to retire just yet. (SWNS)

Despite having to travel to work on two buses with a 20-minute walk, Flucker says the journey keeps him active, describing it as "lovely in the good weather".

“I love working at the shop, and the people I work with, so I have don’t have any plans to retire," he adds. 

“It keeps me young, and I like hearing people's stories when they come in to chat.”

The pensioner started working in the charity shop after he was diagnosed with prostate cancer and spent two weeks being cared for by the St Columba's Hospice.

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When he’s not working at the shop, Flucker spends time gardening and building model railways which he auctions off to raise money for the hospice.

"I can't take on any outdoor challenges to raise money for the hospice so this is my way of showing appreciation for the amazing support and care I received over the years," he says. 

“I named my latest model village Hazelville, after our shop manager Hazel."

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Flucker fought off COVID last December after spending some time in the hospital, but staff at the shop said you'd never suspect he had been so unwell given his mental and physical agility.

Shop manager Hazel Harris, 35, said Flucker is one in a million and a fantastic companion to have in the shop.

“David is amazing, I couldn’t do my job without him, he does everything round here," she says. 

“You’d never believe he was 99 and beat COVID, he looks great.

“One of the other volunteers helped him get back on his feet after he came out of hospital and as soon as the shop reopened he was the first person here.

“He’s the first one here in the morning and is always happy to help with anything," she continues. 

“He has raised lots of money for the hospice through his model railways, and we are very lucky to have him.”

The 99-year-old loves chatting to customers in the shop. (SWNS)
The 99-year-old loves chatting to customers in the shop. (SWNS)

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Flucker grew up in Edinburgh and joined the Royal Airforce as a gunner aged just 17, at the beginning of World War Two.

After nine months of training, he was posted to the desert in North Africa.

Flucker married his wife Mary in 1958, and has two step children. Sadly, Mary passed away in March 2010, aged 82, from diabetes. 

He worked as a printer in Edinburgh until he retired when he was 72, but has no plans of slowing down now.

“I will keep working for as long as I can, I don’t want to give it up," he continues.

“My friends and family are often surprised I am still working and ask why don’t I retire, but I’m just not ready for that yet.

“I am well looked after in the shop, it’s my home from home.”

Additional reporting SWNS.

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