Bus driver retires after 45 years

PUBLISHED: 12:30 02 July 2015

Roy Weaver (Centre) has retired after 45 years with First

Roy Weaver (Centre) has retired after 45 years with First

Archant

A POPULAR Weston bus driver described as a ‘local celebrity’ has retired after 45 years of ‘loyalty and dedication’.

Roy Weaver, aged 64, started as a bus conductor in the town in June 1970 with the Bristol Omnibus Company, now First West Of England.

He and two of his uncles have clocked up 102 years of service for the company between them.

The wristwatch he wears to this day was originally presented to his uncle Jack in 1974 for 40 years of service.

Roy says when he started, things were very different to today, but both driving and his initial position of conductor helped bring him out of his shell and changed his quiet personality.

The Weston native expressed his relief that vehicle technology has become so much more advanced.

He said: “The old buses were hard to drive and some had handbrakes like a railway signal box which meant you had to stand to pull them up.

“I’m happiest with all the mod cons and power steering and I wouldn’t want to go back to the old ways now.”

Roy has undertaken many different roles within the company in the past, including a stint at the credit union office, evaluating new drivers, becoming chairman of the union and being on the pension fund board as a trustee from 1990 to 1997, which he described as his ‘finest moment’.

Roy did not drive on his last day, instead meeting and greeting colleagues young and old who wanted to wish him well.

First’s PR manager for the region, Chris Hanson, said: “Walking with Roy through Weston town centre almost feels like walking with a celebrity, he is constantly stopped by locals wishing him well for his retirement.”

Andrew Sherrington, general manager for Weston, Wells and Bath, said: “Roy has been a valued employee of this company for 45 years which shows amazing dedication, and he will be sorely missed.”

Roy plans to keep himself occupied both within the community and through travelling, having already been to Beijing and Las Vegas, as well as New York.

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