Two long-standing cleansing workers retire after a combined 84 years of service

The two men retired after over four decades each of cleaning up the city streets
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Two long serving members of Glasgow’s cleansing department have been praised for their “inspirational” service after working a combined 84 years cleaning the city’s streets.

Wullie Nixon retired after 43 years working for the city council as a street cleaner while John Martin is retiring after 41 years as a HGV driver.

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Despite this they were no given an award ceremony in the city chambers, a practice that was stopped during the covid pandemic and has yet to restart.

Both men, who are lifelong members of the GMB trade union, were visited by convenor Chris Mitchell who organised a small presentation and gift for them both as a thank you.

Glasgow City Council has also thanked the workers and confirmed they marked their retirement with cards and gifts from the operations team.

The GMB convenor is now calling for the city council to reinstate its long service award ceremonies previously held in the city chambers.

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Chris said: “These workers have been the fabric of our society and have given their life to cleansing the streets of Glasgow.

“Wullie Nixon has given 43 years service and John Martin 41 years of service. They have also been members of the GMG all their working days.

“There should be a full presentation at the city chambers with families, friends and work colleagues coming together to say thanks. We feel the workers have been badly let down.”

The convenor then went on to say that both men were an inspiration and wished them a long and happy retirement.

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He added: “I am proud to stand beside Wullie Nixon. Wullie is inspirational and has been a GMB trade union member since 1979.

“I would like to wish Wullie all the best as he has been a phenomenal union member and a great asset to this city. We wish you all the very best.

“John Martin is the second person to retire this week from the cleansing department. He has given 41 years of service as a HGV driver to this city.

“He has also been a GMB trade union member since 1989. He too is inspirational and on behalf of the branch 40 members we wish you all the best for the future.”

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Glasgow City Council has also thanked the members for their “remarkable service” to the city.

A spokesman said: “Wullie and John have both given remarkable service to Glasgow and their recent retirement was marked with cards and gifts from our Operations team.

“We wish them the very best of good fortune in their respective retirements.

“Unfortunately the long service award ceremonies were curtailed during the covid pandemic and there are no plans at this stage for them to resume.”

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