I started work at Lancaster University in September 1965 when, apart from a few half finished buildings, the Bailrigg site was mainly made up of green fields. My first office was in the eaves of Bailrigg House, and had the most spectacular views over Morecambe Bay. These were particularly beautiful in the winter months when we had the most wonderful sunsets. In August 1966 we moved into University House, and were tripping over workmen for several weeks whilst they completed the work. Now, forty years on we are still tripping over workmen, as they are refurbishing the building!
When I started work in the Payments section, we produced on average 50 cheques a week, which included payment to student landladies, and now we produce approximately 200 cheques per week plus 600-800 BACS generated payments.
During my 41 years at the university, I have worked in several different sections within the Finance Division, including Credit Control and Strategic Purchasing. Whilst working in purchasing, I represented Lancaster University on the Stationery Group of the North Western Universities Purchasing Consortium, where I chaired the stationery group for several years. I found this very interesting, as I met my counterparts from the other member universities, and we were able to exchange views and opinions. There was also the opportunity to meet with suppliers, and we were given the chance to visit their premises to see how they manufactured some of the products we bought.
I worked in Credit Control (or Debtors Control) as it was known then, during the 1970's and I thought that the overseas student fees of £1000 were astronomical, little did I know...
In the 1990's my life came full circle, and I was transferred back into the Payments section, where the Prophecy system was in operation. Many users felt this was the most 'unfriendly' system around, but working with it regularly, I found it alright...until the advent of Agresso, which made Prophecy look positively archaic!
During the past few years, we have introduced many new systems which have enabled us to keep up with the times. The most recent, is the introduction of the BACS system, which enables us to transfer money from the university to the recipient's account, and cut down on the need to produce cheques, which often get lost in transit, meaning we have to cancel them at the bank and re-issue them, thus effectively doing the job twice!
I have a step daughter, Dawn and a grandaughter Zoe who is 20 months old.Dawn has joined her father and I as a member of LADOS.
last updated 1st December 2006