A milkman who went the extra mile to help villagers in need in Kingston for 37 years was “gobsmacked” when residents threw him a party.
Mick Mayo was invited to his retirement bash at Kingston Village Hall on Saturday February 14 where residents presented him with a collection of about £1,700.
During his time as village milkman Mick regularly made tea and toast for one elderly lady who had lost her husband and for another elderly woman he would deliver her milk into her cottage and then make her morning coffee.
When one of his customers who lived alone was ill he stayed with her until the ambulance arrived.
He usually had a supply of chocolate biscuits for the children who flocked round him on a Saturday morning or in the school holidays, hoping for a ride on his milk float.
Mick, 68, from Newhaven, retired on his birthday on January 31 having worked as a milkman for 37 years, serving with six different delivery companies supplying Newhaven and the Ouse valley.
Mick said: “I was gobsmacked by the party. It was great. I had not expected anything like that.”
At Mick’s party the chairman of Kingston Parish Council Martin Lee thanked him for his long and loyal service and presented him with a cheque for £1,646.00 which had been collected by his Kingston customers and friends.
He was also given an album with photos of the village, as well as messages of thanks and good wishes.
Pupils at Iford and Kingston School gave him a scrapbook they made.
His wife Sue was presented with a beautiful bouquet and thanked for the support she had given Mick.
Together around 150 people gathered to enjoy a tea and celebrate his retirement.
One of the party organisers Diana Arlett said: “He always had a smile and a cheery word and came to be liked, valued and respected by his customers and friends. He got to know those customers who needed extra consideration.”
Mick added: “You just look after everyone don’t you. You get very attached to them.
“I’m still talking about my party now. And I’m still gobsmacked.”
So what drives Mick to be so helpful to the villagers he has taken care of for the last 37 years?
He said: “It’s just the feeling of a job well done and over the years they have all become friends. I’m missing my job already.”