A four-month-old springer spaniel pup was the surprise farewell present for Helmsley Town Council’s clerk Dinah Farley when she retired after a decade of service.
Mrs Farley who has also been clerk to Ampleforth and Slingsby parish councils in a long career in parish government, was presented with Sam at her last meeting of the council where long serving councillor Jane Barker, also retired.
Mrs Farley had been without a dog for some two years and when councillors heard of a litter of spaniels being born in the town, they decided to buy one as a special “thank you” present, said Cllr Chris Parkin, the council chairman.
Cllr Parkin, who was re-elected chairman, paid tribute to both Mrs Farley and Cllr Barker, both of whom attended their last meetings last week.
“They have been outstanding stalwarts of life in Helmsley for many years - we shall miss them both,” he said presenting a gift to Cllr Barker, a former chairman and member of the council for 15 years.
He added: “Their service to the Helmsley community has been greatly appreciated.”
l The town council is now to advertise a vacancy following Cllr Barker’s retirement. Anyone interested is asked to contact the new Town Clerk, Victoria Ellis, at the council offices at the North York Moors National Park headquarters.