Don is given a fitting send off for loyal duties to the council with a tankard and hand-crafted walking stick

Don Hollands with Ian Hack, chairman of Wimpole Parish Council.

Don Hollands with Ian Hack, chairman of Wimpole Parish Council. - Credit: Archant

A retired farmer has good reason to celebrate this week as he hangs up his councillor hat after 50 years of service.

In recognition of his dedication to the community, Wimpole Parish Council chairman Ian Hack presented 86-year-old Don Hollands with an inscribed tankard and a walking stick which had been hand-crafted by current councillor Graham Damant.

Don, who has also served as a councillor in Orwell, said: “I felt very privileged when I was presented with the gifts.

“I’ve enjoyed my time as a councillor, getting involved in the community and being contacted by people in the area.”

Don became a councillor when somebody invited him to put his name forward all those years ago.

He said: “I don’t really know why, perhaps they thought I was good material.”

Don has been married to wife Thelma, a long-standing steward at Wimpole Hall, for 60 years.

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The two met through their farming families in Northamptonshire.

Together they have four sons – Stephen, Christopher, James and David.

Despite recently retiring from the council, Don will still remain active in the community – he is chairman of the village hall and has been a church organist since he was 10.

Aidan Van de Weyer, district councillor for Orwell, described Don as ‘a really lovely chap, who is very popular in Wimpole and Orwell.”