I love writing stories like these! In this day and age it's rare for someone to be employed continuously for 40 years by the same company, but at Harwoods on the Isle of Wight, there are plenty of long-servers.
And how many press releases mention Russ Conway?
Harwoods staff gathered at the Renault dealership this week to celebrate 40 years to the day since their service manager John Constable started working there.
John, aged 62, started in the motor trade straight from school when he began as an apprentice technician at Standard Triumph in Newport.
He completed his five-year apprenticeship at Osborne Garage in East Cowes where he worked with the Fiat brand.
After qualifying, he started at Harwoods Renault on 3rd December 1972, his 22nd birthday. Rising through the ranks, he became a MOT tester and worked with the latest Renault models of the day such as the Renault 4, Renault 5, Renault 6, Renault 8, Renault 10, Renault 16 and the Renault Fuego.
He said: “It was a very exciting time to join the Renault brand. As now, the model range was at the forefront of technological advancement and they were famous for their daring design.
“After working as an MOT tester, I covered holidays, took bookings and worked in accounts and then became the workshop controller before becoming service manager.
“What’s lovely about working here is that it’s a truly family-run business and you build up a friendly relationship with your colleagues and customers. Unlike some other businesses, you’re a name, not a number here, and you really get to know people; there are many customers who have been with us for all the time I’ve been here. I’d say that’s the magic of working at Harwoods.
“The 40 years has gone by very quickly and sometimes I joke that I’m still here on work experience.”
Alongside the local customers, John’s career at the dealership in Lushington has even seen him deal with celebrities, including renowned pianist Russ Conway, actor Deryck Guyler and even actor Arthur Lowe who popped in to hire a Renault in which to explore the isle of Wight.
Stephen Harwood, chairman at Harwoods, said: “These days it’s becoming increasingly rare to be able to mark the 40th anniversary of a staff member, so all of us at Harwoods are delighted to congratulate John and thank him for his contribution and hard work.
“With a huge amount of Renault experience and a knowledge of other makes and models, John is able to provide exceptional customer service. Here’s to many more happy years for him at Harwoods!”
For more information, visit Harwoods on Lushington Hill or call 01983 885500 for more details. Alternatively visit www.harwoodsgroup.com or on Twitter at twitter.com/ HarwoodsSales
1. Harwoods Renault service manager John Constable with the team at the dealership.
2. Harwoods Renault service manager John Constable pictured with Harwoods chairman Stephen Harwood.