THe staff at Keith Renton joiners are giving a warm send off to a long serving employee with a barbeque to mark his retirement tomorrow night.
Iain ‘Mac’ McFarlane from Duns spent over two decades with the Leitholm firm, and a total of 50 years in the joinery trade, so his colleagues are determined to give him a party to remember, all they need now is some fine weather!
Owner of the firm, Keith Renton, said he’d learnt more than a few things from Iain over the years as had many others.
He told ‘The Berwickshire News’: “Iain is the type of joiner you could leave to get on with anything and everything, whether it be shop work, working on a new house, he could do it all.
“He will be a big miss to the firm as he also played an active role in training up new starters. I did my apprenticeship with him as did my son, so he’s brought two generations of our family through the ranks.
“Even though we’re all sad to see him go. Iain’s kept it pretty quiet himself but it’s a well deserved retirement.”
And Iain was very complimentary about Keith and his other colleagues, adding that it was the banter with them that he’d miss the most now he’s left the workshop for the last time.
“Keith’s a very easy going boss and he’s been a great man to work for,” he said.
“I remember him being an apprentice at Henry Steel’s all those years ago and it’s strange to think I trained both him and his son Kieron.
“Health wise I’m glad to be finished as my body’s not what it used to be but I’ll definitely miss the company of the lads.
“You can’t beat the chats you have in the workshop or on jobs with your workmates.
“At the moment I’m fine as it feels like I’m just on holiday butgive it a few weeks and I think I’ll really start to miss the place.”
Being in the trade for 50 years, Iain has had the opportunity to work on a number of interesting projects, both small scale and large scale and at home and further afield.
And he said with so much variety, there was never a chance he’d get bored.
“I’ve been doing joinery from the age of 15 and I’ve always been busy.
“I’ve worked on location at Torness and Sellafield power stations and also on the Greenside Place car park in Edinburgh but I have to say I jumped at the chance to work with Keith as I was glad to get back into normal joinery work.
“I’m more interested in the house building side of things and I never get fed up of it. Keith has a guy, John Laidlaw, from Berwick who comes into the workshop; he’s second to none when it comes to joinery.
“A lot of youngsters just starting out in the trade don’t get half the opportunities us older guys had.
“I’ve worked on Ladykirk House, Charterhall and houses in Westruther to name but a few.”
Now he can put his feet up Iain is planning a trip north at the end of the month, before going to visit his son in Jersey later on in the summer.
He added: “I haven’t really been having any lie ins as I like to be up early.
“Now I’ve got all this free time I’ll probably do some walking as I like getting about and I’ve had some golf clubs for ages but never really used them. Maybe now’s the time to get into it!”