A Chessington lollipop man has said not even the dreary English weather gets him down when he is working.
Martin Constable, 37, has been positioned rain or shine at the zebra crossing in Moor Lane serving schoolchildren at Castle Hill Primary School for nearly five years – minus a seven-month stint in Leatherhead Road last year.
The council employee who was born and bred in Chessington said he came across the job by luck after an old boss passed on a flyer.
Mr Constable, of Elm Road, said: “He could not find anyone that was interested. I turned up for the interview and, as they say, the rest is history. It was a bit of luck.
“I love it. I am very lucky because Castle Hill is a great school and the kids are really, really great and so are the parents.
“I help anyone who wants to cross. I just like getting out and meeting people. I don’t even mind the weather – I am always happy.”
In his spare time Mr Constable enjoys watching action films, Formula One racing and spending time with his Hahn’s macaw, a green parrot who loves to learn new words. Mr Constable said:
“He knows about 14 or 15 words. I have had him for about a year.
“He has just learned to say my name and now he won’t shut up – it’s quite funny.”
Parent Jo Swinney, who nominated the lollipop man, said: “Martin does his job with incredible enthusiasm and dignity, crossing everyone over the road with a smile and a kind word.
“He is unfailingly cheerful and friendly, day in day out, in all weathers. “He deals with each person on the crossing with the same respect, whatever their age or situation.
“I know there are times he is made fun of or has to deal with grumpy drivers, stressed out parents, and stroppy teenagers, but he remains professional and upbeat.
“I find a few moments in his company makes my day better.”
On being nominated an unsung hero, Mr Constable said: “I am pleased. I have never been nominated for anything before so it’s a great feeling to think that someone has done that.”
He said he would be taking the award for all the dedicated council workers.
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