A POPULAR caretaker who went ‘above and beyond’ in his job at a primary school has retired from the position after eight years.

Neil Lidster, who was caretaker at St Anne’s CE Primary School in Bishop Auckland, took his retirement on April 30, 2021.

Ellen Taylor, assistant headteacher at the school, said: “Neil has been more than a caretaker to staff, children, and families at St Anne’s, always going above and beyond to help.

“Nothing was ever a problem, from putting up a shelf to starting staff cars when they had broken down.

“Neil built our nursery furniture from scratch and created play equipment ready for opening in 2017 using upcycled materials.

The Northern Echo: Neil Lidster was caretaker of St Anne’s CE Primary School for eight yearsNeil Lidster was caretaker of St Anne’s CE Primary School for eight years

“In his last year as caretaker, he has worked especially hard during the pandemic, keeping staff and children safe in school.

“Neil knew all of our 240 children who grew very fond of him, and took the time to visit each and every one of them when it was time to say goodbye.

“This could be seen in the cards, pictures, and messages that were presented to him by children from nursery to Year 6.

“Neil has been a valued member of the St Anne’s staff and will be missed by all.

“We wish him health and happiness in his retirement, and would like him to know that he will always be part of our St Anne’s family.”