Presentations are made to Elaine (second left)
by Brian Hughes (left), Jean Hughes and
Richard Hughes
There was a big surprise in store for Elaine Pratt when she arrived for work at a Shropshire business.
Balloons, banners, flowers, gifts and a cake were all awaiting her arrival at Chrisbeon Office Supplies where she is celebrating her 25th anniversary.
“I was simply lost for words,” said Elaine, who had ‘forgotten’ it was 25 years to the day since joined the furniture and stationery supplier in Telford.
If she hadn’t been made redundant at Lilleshall Fasteners when they were located next door to Chrisbeon at Priorslee Trading Estate, she may have never have joined the payroll.
“I knew the people at Chrisbeon and when they offered me a sales job it was an opportunity I couldn’t refuse,” said Elaine who is married and from St. Georges.
“It doesn’t seem like 25 years’ ago – the time has gone so quickly.  It’s a small family business, everyone gets on well together and I love coming to work,” she commented.
Throughout her 25 years she has been the company’s stationery sales and customer service person – one of the first points of contact for customers who phone or visit the showroom which is now based at Stafford Park.
Partner Richard Hughes, whose parents Brian and Jean founded the business in 1974, said Elaine’s record length of service was a ‘milestone in Chrisbeon’s history.’
“As our longest-serving employee, she is hard working, reliable and does a great job.  What’s more customers like her which is important,” said Richard, who added:  “We couldn’t let the occasion pass without making this a special day for her.
“We decorated her desk with balloons and banners and put some photographs from the past on her computer.”
In addition, Elaine was presented with a gold bracelet, gold earrings and flowers and a cake was cut to mark her 25th anniversary.