MOST people look forward to receiving a present when they retire. Librarian Pam Westmorland was, however, determined to leave a gift for the whole community when she bowed out.
And quite an expensive one at that!
She has become a recognised favourite with bookworms at Pontarddulais Library following a 12-year long career there.
She wanted to thank people for their support and decided to ask them to help her fundraise for a defibrillator.
As a result an astonishing £17,000 was raised and the piece of life-saving equipment, used to help heart attack victims, has now been handed to the library where it will be housed.
Mrs Westmorland said: "Tuesday was the day of people making a fuss of me but I have to work Saturday morning — then it will hit me. I've been gradually reducing my hours from full-time to retiring, it's much easier. I am going to miss the company and seeing all the people.
"Retiring is going to allow me to spend more time with my partner, as we get older I feel it's important to spend more time together. I have been a constant face at the library. Whenever I go out anywhere I stop and speak to people and say hello."
Previously, Mrs Westmorland spent her career on the road working as a rep but life in the library meant she could be closer to her Pontarddulais home.
"My working career was in sales, I was a rep on the road selling art materials for around 10 years," she said. "Working at the library I didn't have to go away, I was rooted at home."
The mum-of-two, who has three grandchildren, said the community had worked hard to collect the cash and she was grateful for their support.
She said: "They have been marvellous raising the funds. We started on April 1, and we were selling little knitted chicks and Easter eggs and a sponsored swim. "We had a sponsored dog walk, which culminated in a family fun day on July 5 — we all had great fun."
Liz Perkins / firstname.lastname@example.org / @lizperkinspost