Born on 19 November 1857 in Edinburgh to ironmonger James Douglas and his wife Catherine Watson, George Watson Douglas had the original butcher shop at the Leven Road row of shops in Lundin Links. The above photograph shows the shop a few years after it first opened (circa 1899) when George was in his forties and had already had a butcher shop at Forth Street in Leven for some time. The image shows a very traditional butcher's window display, typical of the days before refrigeration and pre-packaged food. Much of the produce would have been locally sourced - some perhaps arriving at this butcher shop from nearby farms via the slaughter house on Hillhead Lane.
Half carcasses would hang from large metal hooks suspended from the ceiling. The shop's internal walls were lined with tiles. Fresh sawdust would have been spread daily on the floor. Salt and spices would have been used to help preserve certain meats. The advert below reveals that the specialities of the business (and presumably what many locals and visitors were eating back then) were "salted and spiced rounds, pickled tongues, sausages and Douglas's far-famed corned beef".
Many people would shop on a daily basis for meat. The advert further below mentions that "orders called for daily and promptly delivered by van". This shop was built with both a cellar and an outside store (across the rear courtyard) - both of which offered some cooler storage space. The 'back shop' just behind the shop space would be used for preparation and had a large sink on the back wall. The gate to the right of the shop (out of shot) would have been in constant use with incoming and outgoing produce. Although George Douglas died aged only 45 in 1903, the family business continued here in Lundin Links for some time and for even longer in Leven.