Nurseryman Ian Holland has retired after 41 years’ service for Ramsey Commissioners.
To mark the occasion the commissioners chairman Andy Cowie presented Mr Holland, who was joined by his colleagues from the parks and gardens service, with a painting of Mooragh Park by local artist Michael Starkey.
Mr Holland grew up in Woking, Surrey, and attended the Royal Deaf School in Margate, Kent, where was head boy for two years.
He left school at 17 years old and followed his father into the gardening profession, securing his first job at Flimwell Wordsutes Nursery in Wadhurst, East Sussex.
He moved to the Isle of Man in 1973 and started work at the Sulby Glen Nursery before joining the commissioners on March 21, 1975.
Commissioners chairman Andy Cowie said: ‘Ian soon became an important member of the parks and gardens service, preparing and growing many thousands of bedding plants and planting out some wonderful summer bedding displays, mainly in Mooragh Park.
‘He first served under head gardener Mr Bradshaw, since when five more head gardeners have come and gone during his employment with the commission, and our seventh and present head gardener, Bobby Cunningham, is now faced with the difficult task of finding a replacement for Ian.’
Mr Cunningham said: ‘Ian has been a valuable member of the parks and gardens teams and has made a tremendous contribution to maintaining the town’s green spaces – especially Mooragh Park – to such a high standard. He will be sorely missed and we wish him all the very best for the future.’
Away from his gardening duties Mr Holland enjoys travelling, particularly cruise holidays, and he used to play in the pool and darts teams for the former Queens Hotel on Ballure Promenade. In more recent times he has played crown green bowls.
Mr Holland thanked the commissioners, adding that during his time with the Mooragh Park had become very much his ‘home’.