'After 75 years it was a very hard decision': Prized pigeon collection set to be sold off
PUBLISHED: 14:47 14 February 2019 | UPDATED: 15:15 14 February 2019
For 75 years a racing champion has dedicated countless hours to his sport.
But sadly due to ill health Jimmy Nolloth has had to call time on his lifelong love of racing pigeons.
When flying, Mr Nolloth, 79, was known as “the man to beat” on the pigeon circuit – and now the racing fraternity is expected to flock to Norfolk this Sunday as a special clearance sale is held.
More than 200 pigeons, loft equipment, baskets, fountains and clay nest bowls will be showcased this weekend as a vast collection of Mr Nolloth’s flock is sold off.
The sale has been organised by Sue Dyer, of the Lowestoft Ness Point SR Flying Club, in conjunction with the Norfolk & Suffolk South Road Championship club as it is held at their main headquarters at Diss Town FC in Brewers Green Lane, Diss on Sunday, February 17.
Mrs Dyer, assistant secretary at Lowestoft Ness Point SRFC and a close family friend, said: “Jimmy will be 80 in May.
“He has been very successful over the years and is a such a great guy.
“He has had pigeons for so long, and they are just a massive part of his life.
“Although he has retired from racing, and not raced competitively for a few years, he has still been a very active member of the club.
“After he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer just before Christmas he came to our January meeting and told us all about his predicament – there was a stunned silence at first.
“But quickly the club members and others have all pulled together to help Jimmy – he is fundamental to the success and growth of our club and is the only surviving club member who got our headquarters started in the early years.
“Pigeons have brought Jimmy lots of enjoyment and success over the years – he was the man to beat week in week out and not only would he take the top spot in races but the first six places.”
Mr Nolloth said: “I can remember that an Irish boy joined the school and he swapped a couple of pigeons with me – that started me off and I was hooked.”
After starting to race pigeons when he left school, Mr Nolloth joined his first club aged 15 and then went on to be part of an original group of four who created the Lowestoft Ness Point South Road Flying Club – which he admitted “is flourishing now.”
Mr Nolloth said: “As I have retired from racing I have the dilemma of keeping a few of the pigeons.
“I am hoping to overcome my illness, and then I can hopefully watch some of them fly again from the garden.
“Obviously I had a sad decision to make – after 75 years it was a very hard decision – but it is not possible for me to look after all the pigeons and equipment now.
“With my treatment starting I hope to get in a better place and so I am grateful to Sue and Mel Dyer for putting this sale together and everyone else for their support – they have all been absolutely wonderful.”
Pigeon sale to be held
“When flying Jimmy was the man to beat, from the shortest to the longest racepoint, either North or South it made no difference.”
That was the reaction of Sue Dyer, ahead of this Sunday’s sale of Jimmy Nolloth’s prized pigeons collection, dating back more than 60 years.
She said: “A lot of the birds included in the sale are direct from Louella Pigeon World.
“We have said that all pigeons will be available at the giveaway price of £5 each – even though there might be a pigeon there that is worth a few hundred pounds.
“It will be a bit of a lucky dip and hopefully we can sell quite a few. We want to give all we raise back to Jimmy and his wife Jeanette.”
With prized pigeons featuring bloodlines associated with Louella Van Morsels, Jan Aarden, Van De Rey, Pearson & Dransfield and Wildemeech, this is a unique chance to “grab a bargain”
The racing pigeon sale is on Sunday, February 17 at Diss Town FC from 11.30am.