A woman has defiantly responded to critics who labelled her “crazy” for getting a tattoo dedicated to her favourite local butchers’ shop.
Julie Turner, a 52-year-old mother of two, proudly decided to immortalise Malcolm Michaels Quality Butchers on her upper left leg. Despite facing some negative reactions, Ms Turner said: “It’s my body, and I can have whatever tattoo on me that I like.”
Miss Turner’s deep loyalty to the friendly butchers at Crossgates Shopping Centre inspired her unique tattoo, which reads ‘Malcom Micheals Butchers No1’ on her upper thigh. She visits the shop religiously, indulging in their fresh pork pies, sandwich fillings, and cheeses on a daily basis.
The idea for the tattoo emerged during a playful banter with the shop’s staff about her existing tattoos. Ms Turner already boasts an assortment of ink on her body, including one that reads “Love me for who I am” on her left arm. Jokingly, she suggested getting a Malcolm Michaels tattoo to complement her collection, and one of the lads dared her to do it. To everyone’s surprise, Ms Turner took the challenge seriously.
Describing the atmosphere at Malcolm Michaels Quality Butchers, Ms Turner shared the team is incredibly friendly and always full of laughter and jokes. They even play “Me Julie” by Ali G and Shaggy whenever she visits, often attempting to coax her into dancing. Ms Turner appreciates their genuine kindness and describes the shop as a fun and friendly place.
Ms Turner said: “Some people have said ‘You’re crazy! You’re mad!’ and all that, stuff like that. I’ve just told them it’s my body and I can have whatever tattoo on me that I like.”
Malcolm Michaels Quality Butchers gained popularity after breaking away from Kirkgate Market in May last year due to high rent and minimal footfall. Since then, they have amassed a significant following, with over 31,000 Facebook followers and nearly 5,000 Instagram followers. Co-owner Malcolm Leary expressed his shock upon learning about her tattoo, considering it a tremendous honour and tribute to their business.
In response to Ms Turner’s commitment, Malcolm jokingly mentioned while many people get tattoos of their favourite sports teams or heroes, a tattoo dedicated to a butchers is quite unique.
He appreciates the gesture and considers it a big win for Ms Turner. In good spirits, Malcolm emphasised that anyone considering a Malcolm Michaels tattoo is welcome to get the logo, name, or any other tribute, but he humbly requested they refrain from getting a portrait of him.
Malcolm said: “I learned about it through our group text with the shop. I must admit, I was shocked to say the least. Many of our friends have got Leeds United tattoos and tattoos of their heroes, and all sorts of things that are big in their lives.
“But a butchers is a bit different! It’s an honour, a tribute but it’s a big call. We’re all married with children and none of us wives have got our names tattooed on them. So, a big win for Julie! Bless her!”
To celebrate Ms Turner’s unwavering dedication, Malcolm launched a competition on the shop’s Facebook page. He offered a £50 goody bag of their products to anyone who could surpass her level of devotion. However, no one managed to match her extraordinary commitment, and she claimed the prize.
Malcolm said: “If anyone else is considering getting a Malcolm Michaels tattoo, they’re more than welcome to get the logo, the name or any tributes – but please don’t get a portrait of me! It won’t look good. You don’t want a bald-headed bearded guy on your arm, keep it simple.”
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