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My shovelling days are over

PUBLISHED: 23:33 29 January 2010 | UPDATED: 16:08 06 July 2010

A MUCH-LOVED worker on the region's roads put his shovel down for the last time last Friday after over 42 years of service.

Anthony Smith was surprised by his colleagues last Thursday as they held a special presentation at the Suffolk County Council Highways contractor, in Rotterdam Road, in his honour.

A MUCH-LOVED worker on the region's roads put his shovel down for the last time last Friday after over 42 years of service.

Anthony Smith was surprised by his colleagues last Thursday as they held a special presentation at the Suffolk County Council Highways contractor, in Rotterdam Road, in his honour.

Tony was told to go home a day before his official retirement and get suited and booted, before he was collected together with his wife Kathy for a special presentation.

Managers and colleagues alike gathered together to say goodbye and present him with a watch, champagne and long service certificate ahead of his official party at Broadlands, in Oulton Broad, last Saturday.

Tony, who celebrated his 65th birthday on Sunday, first started working full-time on the region's roads on April 3, 1967.

He had previously worked on the Lowestoft Borough Council dust carts, but was called to help on the highways when they were short. Soon he found himself working there full-time and stayed there as the service changed to Waveney District Council and then Suffolk County Council.

“When we first gritted we used to stand on the back of the lorry and were targeted by kids throwing snowballs,” he said.

Last week, his colleagues were quick to join together and pay tribute to a man who they would miss.

Tony Snowling said: “He's a great guy; he's going to be missed. He's really well thought of and part of the furniture here.”

Mr Smith admitted that he would miss the “great bunch of lads” but was looking forward to a retirement of keeping fit by going to the gym and swimming.

“No gardening - I've done enough shovelling,” he said.

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