Wickford ticket office's Tony celebrates 40 years on the railway

Thursday, 13 April 2017

From paper tickets to plastic smartcards, a familiar face at Wickford rail station has spoken about the big improvements he has seen while clocking up 40 years’ service on the region’s railways.

Tony Noad, who currently works in Wickford ticket office, joined the railway on April 17, 1977.

And over the past four decades, he has seen some major changes on the railway – including ownership, ticketing and service frequency – and he claims today’s railway is the best it’s ever been.

He left college aged 16 and worked in catering for four years, before joining the railway. His first job working for British Rail, saw him manning the gateline and selling tickets at Billericay.

Tony, who lives in Leigh, has since worked at various ticket offices on the Southend Victoria line, including Rochford and Wickford.

And the passion for the railway runs in the family as both his father and brother worked as train drivers, with his father completing 49 years’ service and his brother 25.

Tony said: “I have seen a lot of changes during my 40 years on the railway. I think everything is better these days – you have better trains, better ticketing and more services. It’s totally different from when I started. I know there’s a lot of work taking place on the Southend line at the moment but ultimately people will get a better railway, with new trains.

“I have worked with some great people over the years and I have no plans to retire just yet. It’s surprising how quickly the time has gone.”

Andrew Goodrum, Customer Service Director, Greater Anglia, said: “We are very grateful to Tony for his continued long service, 40 years is a great achievement.”