‘It’s great to be part of the legacy’

From broken bones to new beginnings

0
Have your say

Ben Treagust originally wanted to be an interior designer. But today his world revolves around sausages, not soft furnishings – and he couldn’t be happier.

(Video by Chloe Oliver)

143339_SAUSAGE_21/11/14''Ben Treagust with the Harry's Posh Pork Sausage created to mark the butchers shop 90th year of business. 'Treagust & Sons butchers in The Square, Emsworth.''Picture: Allan Hutchings (143339-007) PPP-141121-144114003

143339_SAUSAGE_21/11/14''Ben Treagust with the Harry's Posh Pork Sausage created to mark the butchers shop 90th year of business. 'Treagust & Sons butchers in The Square, Emsworth.''Picture: Allan Hutchings (143339-007) PPP-141121-144114003

The 29-year-old is the latest Treagust to be involved in a family butchers that goes back 90 years and five generations.

Ben’s continuing a tradition, but also bringing Treagust’s into the modern world with a website and a new range of sausages.

It was Harry Hurst Treagust, one of seven children, who began the business way back in 1924.

His early life was spent working on rented land, breeding, slaughtering and butchering his own pigs, then selling the meat door to door.

ARMY MEDALS (EB) MRW  17/10/2012 ''The Mayor of Havant Cllr. Gerald Shimbart together with the Mayoress, Elaine Shimbart presented both the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal and Afghanistan Medals to soldiers of 58 Eyres Battery of 12 Regiment based at Thorney Island near Emsworth on Wednesday morning - they were led into The Square by members of The Parachute Regiment Band as a large crowd gathered to appreciate their service to Queen and Country''The waiting crowd were treated to sausages from Treagust the Butcher shop in The Square and were handed around by ????''Picture: Malcolm Wells (123394-3676) ENGPPP00120121017154143

ARMY MEDALS (EB) MRW 17/10/2012 ''The Mayor of Havant Cllr. Gerald Shimbart together with the Mayoress, Elaine Shimbart presented both the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal and Afghanistan Medals to soldiers of 58 Eyres Battery of 12 Regiment based at Thorney Island near Emsworth on Wednesday morning - they were led into The Square by members of The Parachute Regiment Band as a large crowd gathered to appreciate their service to Queen and Country''The waiting crowd were treated to sausages from Treagust the Butcher shop in The Square and were handed around by ????''Picture: Malcolm Wells (123394-3676) ENGPPP00120121017154143

Harry managed to buy a shop in the High Street and ever since then H H Treagust and Sons has stayed in the family and at the heart of life in Emsworth.

Ben says he feels that being a butcher is just part of being a Treagust.

He explains: ‘History does repeat itself a lot. My mum and dad are just like my great-grandparents.

‘I guess it’s great to be part of the legacy.’

20/3/12      RJ''Richard Treagust of Treagust's butchers in Emsworth, for national butchers week, pictured with some bacon''Picture: Paul Jacobs (120992-3) ENGPPP00120120321123653

20/3/12 RJ''Richard Treagust of Treagust's butchers in Emsworth, for national butchers week, pictured with some bacon''Picture: Paul Jacobs (120992-3) ENGPPP00120120321123653

He adds: ‘My nan Bertha used to tell me a lot about the history of the shop as we were very close.’

By the 1980s, the Treagust name had become established as a firm favourite, winning awards at events organised by the meat trade.

The small butchers is currently run by husband-and-wife team Richard and Sue Treagust, with the help of son Ben.

In 2000, after more than 50 years of service to the Emsworth community and

SUS-140918-093057001

SUS-140918-093057001

It was Harry Hurst Treagust, one of seven children, who began the business way back in 1924.

His early life was spent working on rented land, breeding, slaughtering and butchering his own pigs, then selling the meat door to door.

Harry managed to buy a shop in the High Street and ever since then H H Treagust and Sons has stayed in the family and at the heart of life in Emsworth.

Ben says that he feels being a butcher is part of being a Treagust.

He explains: ‘History does repeat itself a lot. My mum and dad are just like my great-grandparents.

‘I guess it’s great to be part of the legacy.’

143339_SAUSAGE_21/11/14''Ben Treagust with the Harry's Posh Pork Sausage created to mark the butchers shop 90th year of business. 'Treagust & Sons butchers in The Square, Emsworth.''Picture: Allan Hutchings (143339-044) PPP-141121-144039003

143339_SAUSAGE_21/11/14''Ben Treagust with the Harry's Posh Pork Sausage created to mark the butchers shop 90th year of business. 'Treagust & Sons butchers in The Square, Emsworth.''Picture: Allan Hutchings (143339-044) PPP-141121-144039003

He adds: ‘My nan Bertha used to tell me a lot about the history of the shop as we were very close.’

By the 1980s the Treagust name had become firmly established, winning awards at events organised by the meat trade.

The firm is currently run by husband-and-wife team Richard and Sue Treagust, with the help of son Ben.

In 2000, after more than 50 years of service to the Emsworth community and the butchers trade, Michael Treagust had decided to retire and sell the business to his son, Richard.

Richard had originally pursued a career as a jockey in Funtington.

But he decided it wasn’t for him and instead followed the family footsteps into the business.

He went on to train as a butcher at the Co-Op in Solent Road, Havant before joining his father in Emsworth.

Ben says he is proud that the family firm has kept going over nine decades.

‘The horsemeat scandal actually increased our trade and we’ve survived various scares over the years.

‘We know all our customers and they know we produce good quality meat, which speaks for itself.

‘I think we also have that personal touch.’

Ben adds: ‘Emsworth is really rare because you don’t normally get town centres with independent shops.

‘We don’t want to be a clone of any other town and Emsworth businesses amazingly achieve that.’

Just like his father, Ben wasn’t always dead set on becoming a butcher.

He reveals: ‘I always wanted to be an interior designer, but now I reckon that I’m going to keep that as a hobby.

‘I was always around the shop when I was younger and properly joined four or five years ago.

‘Then dad let me take on the sausage-making duties.’

Despite being a member of the Treagust dynasty, Ben wasn’t shown any favouritism.

He recalls: ‘I started off delivery driving and I thought ‘‘why not join the business?’’

It’s clear that Ben’s dad is still very much the figurehead of both the family and the butchers.

Despite the occasional stresses of working so closely with your dad, Ben says their relationship is buoyed by their shared determination to keep the business going strong.

‘On a typical day, I start work at 7am and make sausages for the shop, then I focus on my new sausage range while dad stays on top of everything in the store front.’

In recent years, Richard was approached by Co-Op Community Stores to become a supplier for its ‘Local Produce Range’. 

Treagust’s now proudly supply 10 local Co-Op stores throughout Hampshire and West Sussex with their renowned ‘Traditional Old English Pork Sausages’. 

But it’s not just the Treagust men who are behind the business.

Ben’s mum is also involved after leaving her job as a special needs teacher at Warblington School 10 years ago so she could support her husband.

Ben says: ‘She does amazing Scotch eggs, which are becoming quite famous in Emsworth.

‘Whenever she makes them they sell out within a day.’

Richard and Sue have broadened the product range with handmade Scotch eggs, faggots and individual Beef Wellingtons.

Richard is also developing his own dry-cured bacon.

Ben is now aiming to bring the trusted Treagust brand into the 21st century.

He says: ‘I’m working on a website for Harry’s sausages as the internet is the future.

‘But there’s no reason why it should hinder the shop – in fact it might even let people know we’re there.

‘Emsworth has got such a thriving community and it’d be great to keep my dad’s, grandad’s and great grandad’s ‘baby’ going.’

The new generation

As the latest generation of Treagust sausage-makers, Ben Treagust isn’t prepared to merely continue the family tradition.

He has just launched a new range of sausages to mark the family butchers’ 90th anniversary.

Ben says: ‘I wanted to introduce different flavours and I’m hoping to really relieve my dad a little by taking on this new sausage venture.

He adds: ‘I keep coming up with ideas to attract new customers. I’m also considering offering home-cooked meals, like a meals-on-wheels service with fresh, local produce.’

He’s only 29, but Ben is determined to make his mark on the business with his new Harry’s range of sausages.

‘People don’t know the name Harry actually comes from our shop name H H Treagust and Sons. I was thinking of a name and Harry was just staring me in the face all the time.’

Ben says it was important to gain the approval of parents Richard and Sue as he takes the business off in new directions.

‘It’s great that my parents have let me take hold of this idea and run with it. My dad said Harry Treagust would be very proud.’

Ben’s other new venture is seasonal sausages. With Christmas fast approaching, he has introduced festive flavours including mulled wine and pork.

He is taking part in Emsworth’s Christmas market this Friday in the South Street car park.