Oldest Scots skier dies weeks after quitting sport aged 102

Hilda Jamieson, Britains oldest skier. Picture: Cascade News

Hilda Jamieson, Britains oldest skier. Picture: Cascade News

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A woman hailed as Scotland’s oldest skier has died aged 102 - just weeks after she revealed she had been forced to give up the sport.

Hilda Jamieson, who was still taking to the slopes as late as this year, passed away at Ninewells Hospital in Dundee.

Paying tribute, her family described her as a “loving mother and much loved granny and great-granny”.

Only in April had she revealed a degenerative eye condition had put paid to her career on the slopes.

In recent months the great-grandmother, from Newtyle, Angus, had only been able to ski by using one of her daughters as a “beacon” to help her navigate the pistes. Speaking of her retirement from the sport in April, Hilda said: “I love it so much but I’ve had a good innings.”

Mrs Jamieson is survived by daughters Valery, Sheila and Helen, her ten grandchildren and 20 great-grandchildren.

She was laid to rest at Newtyle Cemetery following a funeral service at Newtyle Parish Church earlier this week.

Hilda, who learned to ski on homemade wooden skis in the 1930s, and husband David - who died in 2002 - were pioneers of the sport in Scotland.

They would head out into the wilds at weekends, trudging for hours up steep mountain passes – all for the two-minute thrill of hurtling back down again with huge, cumbersome skis attached to their leather ski boots.

She recaleld: “It was about two minutes’ skiing and then you had to climb and climb up to an hour again but it was worth it.

“It was just a group of friends having a great weekend together. Nowadays nobody walks, they just take a ski lift – and I doubt they could walk up those slopes. There were no edges on the skis and we only had leather boots, which I had to clean and dry five pairs of every weekend.”

The difficulty getting to the slopes spurred David to build, virtually from scratch, the Glenshee Ski Centre to make their passion accessible to everyone. Today it has 27 ski lifts, 36 runs and is billed as one of the best winter sports resorts in the UK.

Hilda added: “He didn’t want it to be just for rich and privileged people – he never took any money from it.”

The couple’s infectious love for the sport was passed down to their three daughters as soon as their feet could fit onto a pair of skis.

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