Celebrating 50 Years: A Rewarding Career

PUBLISHED: 16 May 2024

Throughout 2024, Colchester City Council is looking back on the past 50 years as it marks its golden 50-year anniversary. It is asking people from Colchester to take part in the celebrations by sharing their favourite memories, moments or places about Colchester.

From the Seventies right through to the present day, these incredible people have been helping to shape Colchester and support the people that live here – and they’ve got some brilliant stories to share. Here are three from long-serving employees from the council. 

Read Alex Harris’s story, who has worked for the council for 42 years. She helps support Colchester’s most vulnerable residents by supporting them to apply for a Disabled Facilities Grant, helping them to stay in their own homes for longer. The Grant can help to install such things as stairlifts, access ramps, level access showers, door widening and level thresholds. Alex said, “I find it so rewarding seeing a person being able to get up the stairs and their joy at being able to take a shower safely for the first time in a long while.” Read Alex’s story here.

Zoe Punchard’s story talks about how her role transferred from the private company that ran Colchester Sports Park on Cowdray Avenue before it became council owned and changed its name to Leisure World. She finds her role overall rewarding and enjoys the day-to-day problem solving, ranging from resolving financial reconciliation errors on the tills to finding and implementing innovative solutions to meet customer and staff needs. She has seen lots of change for Sport & Leisure since 1989 and has worked alongside some lovely team members for over 25 years. Read Zoe’s story here.

Lisa Hinman has worked for the council for over 20 years, originally choosing to work for the council as she’d heard it was a workplace where you could develop and further your career – and it's true. She joined as a Civil Enforcement Officer (a traffic warden) and now she manages the whole team of officers. Sadly, part of her role involves supporting officers who are frequently abused verbally and sometimes physically whist carrying out their duties, however they continue to conduct their roles to provide this important service to the communities. Lisa said, “I work with a great bunch of dedicated people and if you see any of us out and about, please say hello, a friendly face is very valued by all of our team.” Read Lisa’s story here.

Pam Donnelly, Chief Executive at Colchester City Council, said:The 50-year anniversary of Colchester Council is a real milestone, and one that I’m honoured to be a part of. Our golden anniversary is an opportunity to celebrate our communities and staff who have continued to be at the heart of our city through the years and have never been stronger. It’s also a great opportunity to share memories, dig our old photographs and talk about how things have changed - please get involved and share these with us.”

The council will continue to mark this half century by celebrating and sharing ‘Your Stories’ from staff, volunteers, and residents – all who make a huge and often unseen contributions to Colchester. These stories will be celebrating the hard work of employees, volunteers, and residents – all who have a passion for our great city in the past, now and in the future. If you would like to get involved, get in touch by emailing communications@colchester.gov.uk.  

Page last reviewed: 16 May 2024


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