ANNE Benton has seen thousands of children come and go after almost 20 years of working in the canteen at Catherine McAuley Catholic Primary School.
“I see some parents now who I served as children,” she said.
Mrs Benton began working on the canteen in 1984 when her youngest child Ben was a student at the school, formerly St Joseph’s Primary School.
“Children don’t really change, they are all just as lovely now as they were when I first started,” she said.
Mrs Benton was honoured for her commitment to the school last Wednesday and was presented with a school community award.
During her many years on canteen she has seen enormous changes in the regulations imposed on school canteens, with an emphasis on healthy eating.
“When I first starting working on canteen, shops didn’t open much at weekends and Mondays were always a very busy day,” she said.
“Now it has all changed and Fridays are our busiest day, probably because people work and shop at weekends,” she said.
Mrs Benton believes using the canteen is now more of a treat for children than it was years ago.
“It’s probably because so many things in the supermarket now are marketed to go into children’s lunch boxes and there is much more choice,” she said.
Every Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday Mrs Benton heads off to school and can not wait for the line up of little ones.
“It’s funny when some of them see me away from the canteen. I think at times, because they only see the top half of me, they think I don’t have legs,” she said.