All change at GT Tyres
GT Tyres' new proprietor, David Philip (43), whose family farm near Alves and run Elgin-based Philip Engineering, said he was looking forward to building on the successful foundation set by his predecessor.
David was only three years old when GT Tyres was launched and, prior to taking over, he had got to know the staff there over 25 years as a customer.
The five staff at GT Tyres' Greshop Industrial Estate base will stay with the firm under its new ownership.
The auto-repairs business was launched by Cameron back in 1977 along with his brother, Ian Gordon, and brother-in-law Roger Thistleton, setting up a small workshop at Newmill, near Keith.
The workshop was moved into Keith three years later, branching out to Forres in 1979 and Huntly in 1980. Roger took care of the Keith and Huntly operations, while Cameron ran the Forres site. The trio also ran an agro-chemicals business, Sprayrite Chemicals.
The Keith branch was closed in August 2013 and Huntly followed suit in January 2017, concentrating operations in Forres.
The firm, which also deals with exhausts, brakes, suspension and agricultural tyres, was one of the first in Scotland to achieve Michelin accreditation and still holds certified centre status.
Now retired Cameron, who still pops in to catch up with his former employees, said: "When I look back we achieved fantastic things for a small company.
"We always tried to have good staff, the best equipment, clean and tidy premises, and good service to customers.
"There's a lot to know about tyres – it's not like buying a bag of sugar. Tyres are one of the most technical parts of a car.
"We had some absolutely excellent customers who had been with us a long, long time and who became more like friends."
The former owner thanked all his customers for their business over the years, adding: "I wish Davie well with his new venture."
General manager Wendy Hay, who has been with the firm for 25 years, said the loyal staff members had treated the business as if it was their own. Workshop manager of 16 years, George Cameron, added: "Wendy, Gary (34 years service) and I have been here so long we're part of the furniture and it's been a big change for us. It's a new era."
David added: "There were two things that were attractive about GT Tyres to me – the location and the staff. These guys are brilliant.
"We want to continue and improve on the template that Cameron has given us."