Panel beater bids farewell after 50 years of service

A Shropshire man has celebrated his retirement after 50 years of working at the same company.

Roger Rayner, from Springfield in Shrewsbury, bid farewell to his employer of 50 years, Inchcape Volkswagen in Shrewsbury, at a retirement party at the retailer.

Organised by friends and colleagues of the Vanguard Way retailer, the 65-year-old was presented with a 2010 Volkswagen Fox as part of his a retirement gift.

Father of three, Roger, started his first day of work when he was 15-years-old as an apprentice panel beater.

From starting in 1961, Roger has witnessed many business changes through his long career. Specialising in vehicle repairs Roger’s original employer was BMC Bodyshop which was bought out by subsequent companies before Inchcape Shrewsbury took over the business in 1978. 

Roger said: “I have enjoyed my time at Inchcape Volkswagen and have been lucky enough to work with a great team.

“Everyone keeps telling me how impressive 50 years is, but to me I have always enjoyed working on cars and this job has been perfect for me.

“The Volkswagen Fox is a complete surprise. I am honoured and speechless at the generosity of my colleagues and the Inchcape Group.”

Inchcape Shrewsbury’s brand manager, Peter Southall, who presented Roger with the Volkswagen Fox, said: “Roger will be missed by everyone. He has being a significant member of the team and will be taking a huge amount of experience with him.

“We felt the Volkswagen Fox was a fitting present for his dedication to his profession and loyalty to the business.

“As far as I’m aware 50 years service is unprecedented within the company and the directors felt we had to do something really special to recognise this.

“We all wish him the very best for the future and hope he enjoys some well-deserved rest and relaxation.”