Customer service award for grandmother of 16

Bucks County Council external customer champion 2013 Beryl Purton with Chris Williams and Margaret Aston
Bucks County Council external customer champion 2013 Beryl Purton with Chris Williams and Margaret Aston

A 64-year-old county council employee has scooped the authority’s outstanding customer service award.

Grandmother-of-16 Beryl Purton from Aylesbury, who is due to retire in January when she turns 65, beat a large field of candidates from across County Hall.

Beryl works for the in-Touch team, one of eight telephone operators responsible each year for calling 5,000 adults who are vulnerable for reasons of age, illness, disability or some kind of social exclusion.

She said: “It was a complete surprise to me. I really didn’t have a clue until an hour beforehand.”

She described it as the highlight of her 29-year career at the council.

“I was so taken aback, I nearly cried.”

Beryl has worked for the in-Touch team for almost six years and was previously a home care supervisor. She was given a certificate and a glass plaque, plus a stunning bouquet of flowers.

Chief executive Chris Williams said: “Beryl’s patience, kindness and support has been recognised by clients and colleagues alike and will be missed when she retires in January. Congratulations Beryl.”

The council also decided to honour the following five employees with a ‘Highly Commended Award’ in recognition of their great customer service:

Kellie English (libraries – stock services); Jane Scott (adult learning); Sue Lemon (libraries); Chris Troke (team leader IT help desk); Laura Williams (libraries).

The customer champion award was awarded to Molly Wilkinson, HR service desk, in recognition of her ‘high quality customer service including her polite and helpful manner, no matter how difficult the query or situation may be’.