Obituary: Dundee businessman and devout charity worker Webster Simpson

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Webster Simpson was a businessman, charity worker and lay preacher whose influence touched the lives of many in Dundee and beyond.

Born in Surrey, Mr Simpson moved to Dundee in 1948 when his father bought the printing business, John Pellow and Company.

He took over the running of the firm in 1962 and was a popular and respected employer, retiring in 1998 when his son Stephen took the reins.

Winter and Simpson Print, as it is now known, remains a successful business, proud of its family heritage.

Mr Webster joined St James’ Church, Broughty Ferry, in 1955 and began a long life of Christian service.  He led youth work for St James and Broughty Ferry Crusaders for many years.

For nearly six decades, he was a lay preacher in churches of all denominations throughout Dundee, Angus and Perthshire.

Latterly, when standing to preach became difficult, his recorded messages on Heartland Radio had a popular following.

Mr Simpson joined the Dundee branch of the Gideons in the early 1960s and was a member for 50 years, faithfully placing bibles in schools, hospitals and hotels for those seeking comfort in times of need.

In his last few weeks, which he spent in Roxburghe House, he was pleased to see a Gideon Bible in his room and asked visitors to read to him from it.

In 1988, Mr Simpson founded Discovery Camps and throughout the next 30 years, thousands of young people in Dundee, who would not otherwise be able to take a holiday, attended its activity camps.

He recruited volunteers, liaised with social work and raised more than £900,000 to cover the costs. Despite battling cancer, he only stepped down as chairman of Discovery Camps in January of this year.

Mr Simpson is survived by his wife Margaret, who he met when they were in their teens through church bible class and married in 1961, as well as his three children, six grandchildren and four great grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at St James’ Church, Broughty Ferry, on Wednesday, March 28, at 2pm, to which all are welcome.

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