Ascension : Freddy Bennett retires after 42 years on Ascension
Submitted by The Islander (Islander Internet Editor) 13.11.2008 (Article Archived on 27.11.2008)
Next week, when the ship leaves for St Helena, we will be bidding Farewell to one of Ascension’s most well known folks, Freddy and Fiona Bennett.
Next week, when the ship leaves for St Helena, we will be bidding Farewell to one of Ascension’s most well known folks, Freddy and Fiona Bennett. Freddy first came to Ascension in 1966 to work for Cable & Wireless as a Clerk in their Main Stores at the Pierhead. Part of the job was to work as Tally Clerk for the ships, a job which him and long-term friend, Ceddy Henry, enjoyed.
In 1976, Freddy was transferred to the new Central Stores downstairs. From 1979 to 1986, Freddy worked in the Accounts Office of Cable & Wireless. He was one of the staff transferred to Ascension Island Services (AIS). It was during this time too, that Freddy was awarded a long-term service award in recognition of his 15 years spent with the company in 1981.
In 1986, he was transferred to the Georgetown Shop, which was then run by AIS, to work as the Accounts Clerk, Cashier and Invoice Clerk. He was promoted to Senior Accounts Clerk in 1991. After which, in 1993, he was recognised again for his long-term service by the company, this time for 25 years in service. Freddy has presently held the position of Accounts Manager since 1 June 2006.
Fiona joined Freddy after they were married in 1973. Their two children, Judy and Paul, were both born and raised here on Ascension. Freddy has been an active member of the Golf Club since 1976, serving as Club Captain for two years. Freddy says, “Although my golfing hasn’t improved much over the years, my wife Fiona took it up and has since proved to be a better player than me!” which was recognised by being chosen to represent St Helena in the sport at the Island Games in 2001 and 2003.
Freddy also started the ‘Hasbeens’ football team in 1991. This was a team with a difference as it was a team made up off “older fella’s”, most of who were members of One Boat Golf Club. This team could always give their younger rivals in the opposing team a hard time. He has also been a member of the Saint’s Club since his first days on Ascension and, as many of us know, he has since enjoyed many Thursday afternoons there with good friend, Arthur (Billy) Williams.
To celebrate Freddy’s retirement, a farewell meal was held at the Anchor Inn. Ian Gough, Georgetown Shop Manager, gave a short speech, after which everyone raised their glasses in a toast to Freddy. Freddy was then presented with a gift from the company of a crystal decanter set with an engraved tray. Freddy says, “I don’t have any plans for my retirement when I get back to St Helena, but I am looking forward to the hard-earned time-off! And, of course, playing golf.”
We all here at the Georgetown Shop wish Freddy & Fiona all the best
for the future.
Happy Retirement Freddy!!