Forestry worker at Ford and Etal Estates receives long service award
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Keith, 52, is the third generation of his family to have worked on the Ford and Etal Estate.
Estate owner Lord Joicey said: “It is a rare thing, and a true privilege, when an employee achieves over 30 years of excellent service to an estate.
"In Keith’s case, it is made more special by the fact that both his father, Derek, and his late uncle Ivor were also awarded long service certificates for their many years’ work on the estate’s farms.
“His grandfather Bob Bickerton served many years as the estate hedge-layer. The family’s wider contribution to the community in this small corner of north Northumberland is truly outstanding.
“Keith is a highly skilled chainsaw operator who has also been a wonderful tutor and mentor to younger members of the team. There probably isn’t a compartment of forestry in which he hasn’t worked.”
Robert Nevins, head of forestry at Ford and Etal, added: “Over the last 30 years Keith has developed into one of the most important employees we have, showing himself to be a highly skilled chainsaw operator and a multi skilled estate worker who is capable of stepping into many roles.
“He is highly respected by not only his fellow colleagues within the forestry department but also by the other departments on the estate, its tenants, and the estate owners.”
Outside work, Keith’s passion is sport, particularly cricket. He recently hung up his bat after 30 years with Tillside Cricket Club. He scored 12,154 runs, racking up 23 centuries and 81 half-centuries.