Woking Borough Council
Civic OfficesGloucester SquareWokingSurreyGU21 6YL
Telephone: 01483 755855
23 October 2013
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Local refuse collector, Peter Eales, has retired after 45 years of service collecting refuse in Woking - an astonishing 11,745 working days!
Peter's career started in 1968, the same year as the first Ford Escort was produced, the UK's first motorway was completed and West Bromwich Albion won the FA Cup for the fifth time.
Over the past 45 years, Peter has seen refuse arrangements change considerably from a back door collection of black sacks to the introduction of fortnightly co-mingled recycling collections and weekly food waste collections.
Taking all these changes in his stride has meant Peter has walked a total of 117,500 miles - that's four times around the Earth! He's also emptied the equivalent of 4,427,865 wheeled bins, visiting each property in Woking an estimated 108 times.
Collectively, the contents of these four million wheeled bins weighed 53,130 tonnes, enough to fill 5,313 refuse collection vehicles which, when placed end to end, would stretch for 30 miles (the distance from Woking to Trafalgar Square in London).
However, not content with walking the equivalent four times around the Earth, Peter has also travelled 293,600 miles in a refuse collection vehicle - enough to have paid a visit to the moon, although he would have to work another 45 years to make it back to Earth!
Speaking about Peter's retirement, Cllr Beryl Hunwicks, Woking Borough Council's Portfolio Holder for Waste and Recycling, said: "This is a truly astonishing achievement. Peter has dedicated his working life to keeping our Borough clean and has seen many changes to the way we dispose of our waste in our Borough. I would like to commend Peter for his commitment to public service and wish him well in his much-deserved retirement."
Joking about his retirement, Peter said: I'm looking forward to taking a short holiday and then spending time in the garden. I can fill my garden waste bin each fortnight ready for ex-colleagues to empty!"