Long service awards celebrated at Forresters
We are honouring our longest-serving employees including one member of staff who is celebrating an incredible 55 years with the firm.
Recently, we announced our long service awards, which give recognition to staff members that have been with the firm for 10 years or more.
In our Liverpool office, secretary Sheila Brand is celebrating her 55th year at the company after joining in 1967. Also, office administrator Julie Murphy has been with the company for more than 30 years. Sheila started as a junior typist when she was 15 years old and says she’s seen some incredible changes.
“In the 60s, if you needed something filed with the patent office in London that day, you would have to type it up quickly and get to the train station in Liverpool,” she said. “The documents would be sent via train, and someone from our London office would pick them up and rush them to the patent office. We all worked on manual typewriters, and would type specifications onto carbon paper, so that we had a copy. We would then go and sit in the garden at the office and go through the specifications to check they were correct.”
The firm that Sheila first started with was Potts Kerr & Co, which went into partnership with Forresters in October 2008. Sheila said: “I’ve seen our roles changed dramatically over the years. For example, when I joined the firm one of my main jobs was making cups of tea for everyone. This involved carrying a pan of boiling milk around the building, which is something you wouldn’t do now for health and safety reasons. Also, we used to work every Saturday morning, and then it was reduced to every other week – now we don’t work at the weekends at all.
“The last thing we did every day was sort through the post, lick each of the stamps and then run down to the post office to catch it before the 5.30pm collection. One thing that hasn’t changed though is the family feel in the office, Forresters is a brilliant company to work for and when I look back I’ve had some really good times.”
Julie Murphy joined the firm in 1990 and said that the intellectual property (IP) industry has become more advanced as technology has improved. “I’ve seen the change from typewriters and sending everything by post, to computers and email,” she said. “I started working at the company as a receptionist when I was 20 and in those days all the admin staff were female. This is something that has definitely changed, as we now have a good mix of men and women across all departments at the firm. One thing I’ve always enjoyed has been our staff away days. These have taken place at one of our office locations either here, Birmingham, London or Munich, and it’s given us a chance to meet up with colleagues that we only usually talk to on the phone.”
Our Liverpool office used to be in Birkenhead, but moved to its current site at the Port of Liverpool Building at Pier Head. Julie said: “It’s great to be based in the centre of Liverpool, and at the waterfront, as there’s always something going on. There has been filming for programs such as Prime Suspect, and some of the movie Yesterday was staged in our office reception. It is wonderful to receive this long service award, which is just one of the ways that the company shows us how much we are all appreciated.”
Long service awards are being presented across all our offices. In Birmingham, there is administrative IT officer Les Wood who joined in 1987, and senior records administrator David Preece who is celebrating 25 years. Also, secretaries Deana Daniels at the Birmingham office and Janet Nicolaou in London have both completed more than 25 years at the company.
Ross Walker, partner and head of Forresters’ Liverpool office, said the firm was immensely appreciative of the hard work and commitment shown by employees. “We are proud to present these long service awards, which are a testament to the attitude of our staff and the culture we’ve built at the firm throughout its history,” he said. “At Forresters, we value the contribution all our employees make to the company’s continued success. These awards are a chance for us to thank those that have shown dedication and commitment over a number of years, helping us to deliver the best service possible for all our clients.”