Brian hangs up his suit after four decades in fashion

Brian Fee

Brian Fee has retired from SD Kells after 31 years

After 45 years at the heart of Enniskillen’s retail landscape, Cornagrade man Brian Fee has dressed many of Fermanagh’s best known faces.
He is now settling into his early retirement from SD Kells where he has been a familiar face for 31 years. Before that Brian was a stalwart of the former Wilson’s clothes shop where he worked for 14 years.
His long career in town trade began at the age of 13.
“I was walking through Enniskillen one day and saw a sign up in the window of Wilson’s looking for a message boy. I started riding a bike for them for three years and then at 16 I went into the job full-time. Wilson’s closed down when I was 26 so I moved over to SD Kells.”
At the age of 18, he met his future wife Maggie, who is originally from Trillick. The couple have two children, Barry (37), married to Caitriona with three children. Their daughter Claire (31) has one son and is expecting another baby next week. She started working at SD Kells 18 months ago, ensuring that the Fee name lives on in the firm for another generation.
Down the years, Brian only clocked up three sick days: “I had no idea what a doctor’s note was,” he said.
“I never complained about having to get up in the morning because I loved going to work and meeting different people. You heard all the gossip around the town from customers and staff. That’s one thing I’ll miss about work – the banter was always great.”
Amid the changing fashion tastes, Brian has learned one important lesson: “I have see many trends come and go. Never throw anything out because it will come back into fashion again – unless it no longer fits you.”
With four grandchildren and a fifth on the way, Brian and Maggie will certainly have their hands full but he will still make time for his beloved Fermanagh GAA and Manchester United teams.
Among those paying tribute to Brian as he retires was his friend, Benny Cassidy: “I have known Brian for most of my life and couldn’t praise him enough for his personal touch and witty humour over all his years of serving people. He always offered his invaluable opinion with notable tact. He would guess my increasing size with pinpoint accuracy.”

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