A waitress at a Sheffield Hotel shows no sign of slowing down as she celebrates her 80th birthday

The great-grandmother has worked at the Rutland Hotel on Glossop Road for 40 years and says she doesn't want to stop working

Monday, 9th April 2018, 2:59 pm
Updated Monday, 9th April 2018, 3:06 pm
Marie Panks a Breakfast Waitress at the Rutland Hotel celebrating her 80th birthday

Marie Panks, who is originally from Darnall but now lives in Hackenthorpe, started working at the hotel in July 1982 and recently turned 80 on April 8.

She has seen the hotel through four different owners, but says 'the thought of stopping scares her.'

Marie (Pictured centre) with co-workers welcoming Headteachers on foreign-exchange from Japan

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Jokingly she blamed her husband of 38 years, Geoffrey, saying: "I don't want to stop 24/7 with him!"

Starting as a full-time waitress Marie juggled family life with six children at home, and a busy breakfast shift.

40 years on and she is still going strong.

Working as a supervisor on the same breakfast shift, she remains 'wise and witty' often having jokes with customers and staff alike.

Jason Horton, who worked with Marie for 12 years said "She's one in a million and one of a kind. Every new owner has loved her. She's like the Queen mother."

During her time at the hotel Marie has been crowned 'unsung hero' at the Sheffield Hospitality awards, and has achieved a '4 star' breakfast award during her role as supervisor on the morning service.

She used to work six days a week but is now gradually reducing her days, having recently cut down to four.

Speaking about her work ethic, she said: "I think a lot of it comes from being in the forces in the officers mess with the royal artillery.

"I enjoy my job and I love my job. I don't want to stop."

She has also met a few famous faces along the years including Carol Vorderman, Boy George, Sheffielder Joe Elliott singer of Def Leppard, The Dubliners, the famous footballing Charlton Brothers, Little Mix and has even told Ainsley Harriott that he looked thinner on the TV!

Julie Holmes has worked with Marie for five years, and says there is nothing she won't do, even lending hand to cooking in the kitchen.

"She's a star. She runs about the place quicker than me and quicker than I ever could.

Marie and Jason Horton on her 79th birthday

"She's like lightning. She's a mother hen, but she's not afraid to give someone a crack!"

Speaking about why she keeps going she said: "I like meeting new people. We've seen a lot come and a lot go. It's a reason to get up in the morning."

Throughout the years, some of her family have even worked at the hotel including her son, three of her daughters and numerous grandchildren.

However, she says that they have given up telling her to slow down.

Gail Plant, Human Resource manager at the hotel added: "Whether rain, sunshine or even snow Marie makes it to work.

"By the time she's 100 she'll be down to two days a week!"

Marie (Pictured centre) with co-workers welcoming Headteachers on foreign-exchange from Japan
Marie and Jason Horton on her 79th birthday