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Former dinner lady at Havering Sixth Form College retires after 38 years

PUBLISHED: 14:02 02 December 2016 | UPDATED: 14:02 02 December 2016

Former dinner lady Carol Strange with kitchen staff at Havering Sixth Form College.

Former dinner lady Carol Strange with kitchen staff at Havering Sixth Form College.

Havering Sixth Form College

Fond farewells and a few tears were shed as a former dinner lady retired after working almost 40 years at a college.

Former dinner lady Carol Strange in 1991 when the college first opened.Former dinner lady Carol Strange in 1991 when the college first opened.

Carol Strange, 72, from Romford, hung up her kitchen assistant apron last week for the final time at Havering Sixth Form College, Wingletye Lane, Hornchurch.

She received flowers, vouchers and chocolates from her friends and colleagues as leaving presents.

She said: “I have loved my time here – every single day.

“I’ve never woken up and not wanted to come to work and that’s all because of everyone I work with and the students, who I can’t say a bad word about.”

Carol started her 38-year long career as a dinner lady in 1978 when the site was Dury Falls School, only taking the job so she could earn enough money for a car, thinking it would only be temporary.

But as the months and years went by, Carol enjoyed the job more and more, deciding to stay on as supervisor when the school became Havering Sixth Form College in 1991.

After almost four decades of starting work at 6am every morning to prep, chop, cook and serve food ready for the lunchtime rush, the mother-of-three, grandmother-of-seven and great grandmother-of-one with another one the way, has finally left the building.

One of her colleagues said: “She will be missed so much.

“She’s just a genuinely lovely lady. The kitchen will be a duller place without her.”

Carol added: “In all my 38 years I’ve not had one student be rude to me.

“They are a really lovely bunch of kids we get here.

“I’ve also been really lucky to work with such lovely people.”

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