FIVE apprentices were tarred and feathered last week as part of a long awaited traditional ceremony.

Jordan Mcnab, Daryl Kilpatrick, Stephen Watt, Corey Reid and Dylan Taylor all celebrated the end of their apprenticeships with the age old tradition at Speyside Cooperage in Tullibody.

Known as "trussing the cooper", the tradition dates back many centuries and is still going strong at the local workshop.

Some of the boys finished their time around two years ago but have had to bide their time because of the pandemic.

Brian Morgan, who plays for Sauchie Juniors and featured in the Advertiser when he was initiated himself in 2017, reflected on the journey the five men have made.

He said: "Four of the boys started at the same time and then Corey was a year later.

"They finished their fourth year on the production line and then they get initiated [which] dates back to the 14th century.

"After their time they get all the rubbish of the day chucked over them, everything off the shop floor.

"Back in the day it was a bit more extreme.

"Four of them have been out their time for maybe two years."

Some of the boys tried their best to mask the smell but Brian admitted the smell was horrendous.

He said: "It was stinking. I was doing it for one of my apprentices but I couldn't do it, I was taking the boke.

"Some of the boys put Vicks up their nose, other boys had ear plugs up their nose.

"It's horrendous but it's a celebration [too]."

With their apprenticeships now over, Brian reflected on Corey and Jordan, and how far the young men have came.

He said: "My two were brilliant to work with. You're PBR (paid by results) so you've really got to come in, get your head down and work hard.

"That sets the stall out from the start. My two were a joy: in every day, gave it 100 per cent and listened to what they were told.

"I was tough on them but I think you've got to be.

"You're only like that because you want the best for them.

"I'm so proud of where they started off It's not just boys that you work with, it's watching them turn into men.

"I got Corey straight out of school so he was 16 years old and he's 20 now. He was quiet but we brought him out his shell and taught him how to be in an environment with men which is quite a daunting thing.

"You've got to respect who you work with. Jordan might have been 17 or 18 when he started and they were both quiet.

"When you see them now they're cracking young guys and they've obviously got a chance of having a good career ahead of them."