Renfrewshire Council

Farewell Rosemary!

Best wishes to Rosemary Carlin from members services who is retiring after 47 years

Rosemary at retirement presentation
Rosemary at her retirement presentation
Member services have said "farewell" to their longest serving colleague Rosemary Carlin who has retired after 47 years at the council.

Rosemary has seen a lot of changes during her time here and says she will always be grateful for the many opportunities and happy working life she has had at Renfrewshire Council. We caught up with Rosemary in her last week to find out a bit more about her council story...

Hi Rosemary!  Thanks for agreeing to talk to us. Can you tell us a bit about your role in Member Services?
Hello, no problem! I am personal assistant to the Leader of the Council and have been working in this team for over 25 years. I've always enjoyed the role because it's varied and never boring! Things are always moving and it's been especially critical that I could adapt with my role as it changed and evolved with each election every five years. In total I've been PA to six council leaders and when I started with member services back in 1996, I knew I had found my niche. I'm also a registered first aider, so I have assisted quite a few patients in work over the years.


47 years at the council is an impressive record. You must have experienced a lot of change in that time
Oh yes! Things are always changing but I think that's a good thing and it's part of who we are as an organisation. We are good at developing and moving forward so I've never stopped learning throughout my career. I started working in the 'typing pool' for what was then Strathclyde Regional Council on 20 October 1975. It felt very much like the '9 to 5' movie in those days. I had a very strict supervisor who demanded perfection. A "no talking" rule was firmly enforced, and I had to type "60 words a minute with no mistakes". It wasn't all hard work though. I made life-long friends and we had a lot of fun together - I even learned to knit during my tea breaks!

I used to love the sound of a typing pool busy at work and still miss it to this day.  I've gone from using a manual typewriter to electric, to Microsoft Office programmes to even seeing the introduction of automation. Providing audio and typing services to different council departments was always a learning process and I gained a lot of knowledge and understanding doing that.  I'm very grateful for the opportunities as well as the training and support I've received over the years.

We have no doubt you will be sorely missed by your colleagues. Is there anything you will miss?
I will miss the council! I have grown up here from my teenage years to becoming a married lady, a mother and now an old age pensioner! I've had a great working life here but most of all I will miss my colleagues - but I promise I will keep in touch with them.

I am sad to be ending this chapter of my life, but I'm equally excited about starting a new one, enjoying some "me time" and embracing other parts of my life more.

You've certainly earned it! Do you have anything exciting planned for retirement?
I have a big family and am one of nine children. So, there are plenty of people around me and I know I will always be kept busy.

My husband and I have booked a holiday in the sun in November - to help prepare us for Christmas which is just round the corner.

I'm also a member of Curves in Paisley and I work out there at least 5 days a week. I love it because not only does it keep me physically fit, but it helps my mindset and I have met lots of great people there. 

We also spoke with Rosemary's colleague, Donna Gallacher, who commented, "Life working with Rosemary has definitely not been dull, she has been a constant within our team, one of the originals, always willing to share her knowledge with her colleagues. Her sense of fun will be sorely missed by everyone in our team and we can't wait to hear how far her adventures in 'life after the council' take her."

Finally, Mark Conaghan, Head of Corporate Governance added, "Rosemary is a force of nature and the life and soul of any party. She is very much proof of the old adage that the best things come in small packages! Her contribution to the council has been enormous and I know that her support was valued by every one of the council leaders that she worked with. We will all miss her, although I am sure she won't be a stranger."

All the best Rosemary. We wish you a long and happy retirement!

Published on Wednesday 12 October 2022