Picking up the pieces ...all 32,000 of them!

Chris Grubb with his 32000 piece jigsaw
Chris Grubb with his 32000 piece jigsaw

A KIRKCALDY man’s love of puzzles has seen him successfully complete his biggest challenge yet ... a 32,000-piece jigsaw!

Chris Grubb (44) spent four-and-a-half months building the colourful puzzle before finally joining the 16 sections together recently in Templehall Community Centre.

Chris Grubb with his 32000 piece jigsaw

Chris Grubb with his 32000 piece jigsaw

The former Kirkcaldy High pupil, who works as a fabricator welder for Glen-Fab in Glenrothes, told The Press he has always loved jigsaws from an early age.

Chris didn’t do it to break any records, but just for a personal goal he set himself.

He said: “I have done jigsaws from a very early age and I’ve always had a love for puzzles of all sorts. But more so in the last 10 years as I am single and have plenty free time on hands. You also need lots of patience!

“My mum always bought them for birthdays and Christmases and I soon became hooked and started collecting. Over the years I have mainly collected jigsaws designed by the Dutch artist Jan Van Haasteren and must have at least 120 of them.

“Most of my jigsaws are between 1000 and 5000 pieces but I soon found I was getting through them too fast so I decided to challenge myself.”

He continued: “Around three years ago I purchased an 18,000-piece jigsaw and completed that one with ease so I then had my eye on the 32,000-piece jigsaw which I saw online.

“It is a mixture of drawings by American artist Keith Harris called Double Retrospect.

“It took me at least a year before I decided to buy it and take on the ultimate challenge as jigsaws don’t come any bigger than 32,000. I build them not for any record but just for personal satisfaction and find it relaxing after a hard day’s work.

“I worked on this jigsaw for two hours after work in the evening and at weekends. But I couldn’t build it up at home because it was just too big so I took the pieces up to Templehall Community Centre and it took roughly 45 minutes to put all the sections together. I then broke it down as it was too big to store anywhere.”

Chris has built many jigsaws over the years and says he finds it tough to pick a favourite.

He explained: “It’s hard to say what my favourite jigsaw would be as I have so many, but I would have to say the 32,000 has gave me the most satisfaction. I build them in my room but store them all in the attic and go back to them from time to time and rebuild them.”

He added: “Im always up for a challenge and would love to do another puzzle as big or even bigger than the 32,000- piece one, so hopefully the manufacturers have something in the pipeline!

“My workmates always laugh at me doing jigsaws at the age of 44, but it works for me and keeps my mind active.”