Ben’s name is above the door on retirement

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A LECTURER, who has helped carve out careers for many young carpenters and builders, has retired after 38 years at West Suffolk College.

Ben Mayhew, 59, from Woolpit, was himself a student at the college before joining its teaching team in 1974.

Last week, colleagues and students presented him with a range of gifts and his service to the college will be marked by a plaque at one of the workshops at the Milburn Centre named as the Ben Mayhew Carpentry Workshop.

Mr Mayhew began working at the college as an assistant lecturer in carpentry and joinery, working his way up to become assistant head of construction in 2007 and head of school of construction crafts in 2009.

After leaving college, he went to work for Harvey G Frost which was taken over by R G Carter during his apprenticeship.

Mr Mayhew said: “During my time at West Suffolk College I have seen the college grow and grow, but always keeping the extremely high standard of facilities, teaching and achievement rates.”

Among the gifts Mr Mayhew received were a golf club voucher, golf book, a photographic portrait on canvas of his Newfoundland dogs, a decanter, a bottle of good brandy and a decanting board made by colleagues.

He said: “The most pleasing thing has been to see the standard youngsters are at when they come to us and the standard they are at when they leave.

What is really nice is that you might meet them several years after they leave and they chat and let you know what they are doing.”

Mr Mayhew said that having a building named after him was ‘just fantastic’ and had come as a total surprise.

Mr Mayhew plans to enjoy retirement with his wife Caroline, who has just retired from Greene King after 42 years.