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End of an era at the Express

When former Paisley Daily Express editor Jim Neil announced his retirement, the paper decided to bring to a close the long-running column he had been working on.

Nostalgia column Golden Threads ran for the last time at the weekend.

Jim, (65), had penned the column for the past four years, taking over from David Rowand, and during that time had taken readers on a journey down memory lane, writing almost 250,000 words.

His retirement also marks the end of an association with the Express dating back to 1954 when he joined the company as a labourer before moving to the paper’s editorial department and eventually becoming editor in the late 1970s.

Jim said: “Golden Threads has been a major part of my life for so long and it will be a big wrench to stop writing the column which has given me so much pleasure.

“It enabled me to make so many marvellous new friends and reunited me with old acquaintances from the distant past who phoned and wrote to me from all over Britain and the rest of the world after reading the column.”

Some of Jim’s early Golden Threads articles were also put together for a book published by the Express.

He said: “It is a wonderful feeling knowing the book will be a permanent record of all that is best about Paisley. I want Paisley people to feel proud of their town.

“I’ve had a wonderful time working on the articles and enjoyed every minute of it. But now it’s time to call it a day.”

Express editor Jonathan Russell said: “Jim brought history to life with the way he wrote his copy and it was hugely popular, especially with some of our older readers.

“But there are only so many things you can write about without it getting repetitive and Jim felt the column had come to its natural end.”

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