We wouldn’t be where we are today if it wasn’t for our loyal and hardworking team and this year sees five incredible members of staff receive their 20 years’ long service award.
On the 1st September 1997, Madeleine Kelly, joined the Ragdale family.
Madeleine was 18 years old when she started working at Ragdale, she had just finished studying at Kings Lynn College in Cambridgeshire (now known as College of West Anglia) before she made the move to Ragdale.
She started as a casual therapist in the salon and planned to stay a couple of years to get some experience and then wanted to travel and work abroad.
But, Madeleine fell in love with Ragdale and who could blame her?
“It’s like being part of a big family, there is so much support, “she said.
“I’ve had the chance to progress through the business and take on new roles, I have been given so many opportunities.”
In 2009 Madeleine took on the role of Treatments Manager overseeing a team of 130 therapists and in 2015 she progressed and now oversees Treatments Administration as well (you might now be wondering, what does her role include?).
Madeleine is responsible for the overall running of the salon and the administration of treatments for all our guests. She is also a duty manager, so let’s just say she is very busy!
We asked Madeleine what challenges she has faced during her time at Ragdale, she said; “Not knowing what you’ll be faced with, as every day is different and trying to keep such a big team motivated can be quite challenging sometimes as their work is so physically demanding.”
Madeleine manages to juggle her job with being a mum to a four year old boy, named George.
Steve Topley (right) and Nigel Green.
Steve Topley took over the role of Building Services Manager on 7th April 1997 having previously worked for a large engineering company in Grantham.
Steve’s job is to plan and arrange the maintenance and building work in the ever evolving and expanding building. In the 20 years that Steve has been with us, he has overseen and been heavily involved with all refurbishments and major building projects, including the Thermal Spa and now the construction of the new Rooftop Infinity Pool.
“When I first started, the business was a lot smaller. Every new project has changed and improved the Hall and I’m very proud of what we’ve achieved,” said Steve.
“Working in such a large place and keeping up to speed with maintenance work can be quite challenging, the work load can be quite demanding and maintaining Ragdale’s high standards is very important.”
We asked Steve what he’s liked the most working here and he said, “I like the variety of work and that every day is different. The work is never boring and is always hands on. Myself and my team have a good laugh and it’s great working with them.”
Nigel Green has decorated virtually every room in the Hall over the last 20 years and he’s even decorated some of them twice (that’s a lot of rooms!)
In May 1997 Nigel joined the Ragdale team and his first ever job was to decorate the Tower Room, he was even able to describe how it used to look- last year it was fully refurbished again!
“It’s been great working at Ragdale as I’ve been able to learn different trades and aspects of the job whilst covering duty maintenance on some weekends and even look after the workings of the spa area”.
We asked Nigel which room was his favourite to decorate and the one he was most proud of, “It’s hard to choose as there are too many and you want to be pleased with them all,” he said.
Outside of Ragdale, one of Nigel’s notable achievements was taking part in the in 2006 London Marathon to raise money for the Anthony Nolan Trust, and he ran alongside our Managing Director, David Hamdorff.
‘You’ve heard Francis before you’ve seen him’, his friendly personality has brought smiles to many faces over the past 20 years.
At the age of 23, Francis Boldra joined the Ragdale team. He began working in the main kitchen and staff kitchen where he works alongside the chefs keeping the place spick and span. He only recently transferred to the maintenance team a couple days per week, where he has enjoyed helping and learning new things.
When we spoke to Francis, he said he loves the people he works with and likes being part of such an incredible team. He followed by saying that he enjoys the jobs that he does and that they change each day.
Francis admitted that he had the ‘Ragdale Bug’ and that he feels very proud he has reached 20 years’ service. Francis also mentioned that his family were very happy and proud of him for reaching 20 years.
Everyone who knows Francs, knows that he is a massive Leicester City football fan and has only just recovered from the excitement of them winning the Premier League a couple of seasons ago.
On 30th September 1997, Kay Gibbons joined the Ragdale Hall family and she’s been answering your queries since.
Originally from London, Kay and her husband moved to Melton Mowbray as he was positioned at RAF Cottesmore. Kay first worked in Housekeeping at the weekends while her children were very young. She later joined the Admin team, then in 2003 she moved to the Enquiries team where she is today.
Kay said: “When I first started in Enquiries, there was a lot to take in and remember.
“With the growth of the business and the building, there became more to the job and we had to learn a lot more about the spa”, she added.
After speaking to Kay, we found out that she has been asked a lot of questions over the years, questions such as ‘what taxi company should I book with’, ‘what should I wear around the hall’ and ‘can I have extra milk/ shampoo and pillows for my room?”