HIS smiling face and gentlemanly character have made him a fixture at The News for the past 49 years.
But yesterday, our front office manager, Arthur Collier, called it a day on his remarkable career.
Arthur, 64, started his retirement amid a few tears and a lot of pats on the back.
‘It is a bit sad,’ he said.
‘I’ll miss it because I really like the people here.’
Arthur said he’d never thought about working for another company because he had always been satisfied at The News.
He said: ‘When I started it was a family firm and everybody just stayed then, you didn’t expect to get another job.
‘And to be honest I’ve always been happy here.’
Much has changed since Arthur first wandered into the office of The News’ sister paper, the Chichester Observer in June, 1965.
Petrol was just 26p a gallon, Pompey were playing in division two and Harold Wilson was prime minister.
The business of making The News has evolved from hot metal typesetting to up-to-the-minute multimedia reporting.
Arthur said he’d enjoyed meeting the new challenges.
‘They always say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but they taught this dog some new tricks,’ he said.
He said the most important things had stayed the same anyway. ‘I’ve always enjoyed dealing with people, and that hasn’t changed,’ he added.
After about 10 years at Chichester, Arthur started working at The News Centre in Hilsea before moving to the newspaper’s new home at North Harbour last year.
He has also been a regular feature in the city’s bike lanes, having ridden to work every day for the past 40 years.
Annetta Threlfall has worked with Arthur at the reception desk of The News for 17 years.
She said: ‘He’s always such a happy chap, always pleased to see everyone and nothing’s ever too much bother for him.’
Editor of The News, Mark Waldron said: ‘Arthur’s always been a cheery feature of our front office.
‘We wish him all the best. He’ll be sorely missed.’
Arthur and his wife, Margaret, plan to spend their retirement travelling and spending time with family and friends.