Carol signs off after a varied life – in Ruthin

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Carol Jones has moved about a bit during her 38 years with the Forestry Commission – all of about 100 yards, to be precise!

Carol worked in several different offices in north Wales before retiring recently, but in all that time she never strayed more than a stone’s throw from where her career began way back in 1972.

Over the decades she has worked in three different offices since starting work as a forest clerk – all of them at the Commission’s base in Clawdd Newydd, near Ruthin, where she has lived all her life.

Her first office was an old wooden hut which was once part of a former holiday camp for city children built by Liverpool Corporation.

Following heavy bombing of Liverpool during the Second World War, the site closed temporarily in 1941 and was turned into a training camp when boys from the Mersey naval training ship Indefatigable were evacuated to this safer shore base.

The camp reverted to being a children's holiday camp in 1945 when the cadets were moved back to a ship on the Menai strait.

Carol moved from the hut when the present office occupied by Forestry Commission Wales staff was built in the mid-1980s, but she also spent a few months in a temporary portakabin in 1993.

She remembers some interesting times spent carrying out a variety of roles as the face of forestry changed, ending up as leader of the Commission’s technical services team who administer the forestry grant schemes in Wales.

She said, “I’ve seen huge changes over the years. I remember going on a three-week training course in Corris to learn how to use the computer to do all the wages.

“And before the advent of mobile phones, our offices had radio-based communications to enable us to talk to workers out in the forests. There was a big radio transmitter in the middle of Clocaenog forest.”

The fascinating history of the area added to the variety of life for staff working in the Commission offices.

Carol said, “We often get visitors from all over the country ringing the doorbell and asking if they can have a look round and take a trip down memory lane.

“It’s a surprisingly small world. On holiday in California I met someone from Yorkshire who had vivid memories of his time at the holiday camp here at Clawdd.”

Media enquiries to Forestry Commission Press Officer Clive Davies on 0300 068 0061, mobiule 07788 190922, email