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Joyce serves up her last supper

Dinner lady Joyce Willox is retiring after 31 years of service at Hatton School.

Dinner lady Joyce Willox is retiring after 31 years of service at Hatton School.

One of Buchan’s longest-serving dinner ladies has dished up her final meal before retirement.

Joyce Willox, who turned 60 in February, has dedicated 31 years of her life to serving the children of Hatton School lunch each day.

Now, as her husband nears retirement, she has decided enjoy some much-deserved time off.

Mrs Willox said: “My husband finishes in July and I think it’s time to retire to take some time to myself.

“We going to spend some leisurely time at home together.”

The rural school has fewer than 100 pupils but during her time Mrs Willox has catered for two generations of young people.

She continued: “It’s been so rewarding.

“My own son came to the school and now he and his friends have kids who are back here eating lunch every day.

“I think it’s time to call it a day before I end up serving their grandchildren.

“I’ve made a lot of friends here. I’ve worked with four headmistresses and one headmaster and all the staff have been great.”

Mrs Willox, originally from Newburgh, moved to Hatton in 1975 and has been here ever since.

Staff at the school celebrated Mrs Willox’s commitment with a tea party during her final week.

They were joined by Aberdeenshire Council’s manager of school catering services Allan Doig who praised the work of one of his longest-serving members of staff.

Mr Doig said: “She’s been fortunate enough to see the children she started with come back with kids of their own and, over the years she’s seen some big steps forward in school meals.”

Lunches at Hatton School are served in the gym hall and, on her final day, the children and teachers presented her with a bouquet of flowers.

 

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