Popular butcher and founder of Doncaster's Topping Pie Company dies

Bill Topping, third from left, in 2007 at the opening of the new Topping Pie Company factory.
Bill Topping, third from left, in 2007 at the opening of the new Topping Pie Company factory.

A popular butcher who set up Doncaster's renowned Topping Pie Company has died.

Bill Topping, who worked in the meat and pie industry for more than 30 years before handing over the reins to his son Roger, died earlier this month at the age of 90.

Mr Topping first opened a butcher’s shop in Scawsby in 1961 - but little did he know that it was the start of a multi award-winning company whose products would one day grace the deli counters at Selfridges, Harrods and upmarket grocery chain Booths.

Bill hung up his butchers apron in 1989, passing the baton on to son Roger and his wife Maggie - and it was Maggie’s talent and passion for home baking that would establish The Topping Pie Company, in Doncaster, as one of the premier pie makers in the region.

Within two years, Maggie and Roger had moved to bigger premises to keep up with demand, which dictates that the company must make its pies in bulk, rather than in a humble kitchen oven. Indeed some 28,000 pies are produced every week from its headquarters at the town’s Waterside Industrial Estate.

The firm has been a regular fixture in Doncaster’s market hall since the early 1970s, which has been managed by Bill’s grandson Mark for the past 20 years. In recent years, Toppings has also opened a stand in the Frenchgate Shopping Centre and at Crystal Peaks Shopping Centre in Sheffield.

Mr Topping, died peacefully on December 12 at his home in Westwoodside.

The funeral service takes place on December 23 at St Nicholas Church, Haxey at 2pm.