Final chapter for Sidmouth Library stalwart Vicky

Longest-serving staff member bade fond farewell after 36 years

SIDMOUTH Library’s longest serving member of staff was bade a fond farewell by colleagues and customers last Friday.

Vicky Luxton, who worked at the Blackmore Drive hub for more than 36 years, was made redundant as a scheme to install self-service machines looms.

The final chapter of the 53-year-old’s three-and-a-half decades at the library was a surprise tea party thrown by well-wishers.

“It was my first job and only job,” said Vicky, of Manstone Avenue.

“I started when I left school and had worked there for 36 years and four months.

“It was my life until last Friday. I’ve seen many library managers, and lots of staff, come and go. I’d been there the longest.

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“I’d have loved to have stayed on. Because of cut backs they would rather have less staff - but you can’t have a conversation with a self-service machine.”

Vicky has been left searching for a new job. She was told of her redundancy last September.

The Herald reported in July last year how Devon County Council set aside �80,000 to refurbish and install self-service technology at Sidmouth Library.

Vicky said of the surprise tea party thrown in her honour: “It was lovely, I was so pleased they did it for me.”

She thanked all the members of the public who handed her gifts.

Vicky, renowned with colleagues for preferring cheese over chocolate, was handed a basket full of the stuff.

“I was what they called the ‘demon shelver’. I quite liked shelving books,” said crime literature fan Vicky.

Meriel Santer, first assistant at the library, said: “She was absolutely brilliant at her job, we’ll really miss her.

“She would always shout out to warn customers the library was closing. On Friday, we let her call ‘Time gentlemen please’ - which she liked.”

Library assistant Sylvia Werb added: “People have been saying the place won’t be the same without her.”

Vicky will have a joint birthday and leaving party in the Balfour Arms, next Friday, January 27, from 7.30pm. Former colleagues and members of the public are welcome.

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