A Suffolk man has described how he will "miss the people" after 42 years of working at a garden centre. 

Michael Henton started working at Narey’s Garden Centre in Bury Road, Stowmarket in 1980 when he was doing "general work" around the store. 

Since then, he has moved into the nursery and has been running the trees section, being responsible for bare root trees and bedding plants. 

However, Mr Henton’s association with the business dates back even further than 1980, as he worked there for more than a year when he was younger before returning. 

He will be spending his last day at the store on Christmas Eve and explained he had decided to retire to spend more time "doing the things I want to do" in life. 

He added: “I have had words with my wife. I had worked 12 days out of 14 and she said to me ‘isn’t it time you packed up and did things you want to do?’"

East Anglian Daily Times: Michael Henton said he would 'miss the people'Michael Henton said he would 'miss the people' (Image: Charlotte Bond)

However, the 79-year-old said he had a ‘good life’ after being brought up in a children’s home after his father left and his mother died when he was young. 

Mr Henton lives with his wife Christine in Wayside Close, Stowmarket, and has two daughters and a son. 

He said: “I will miss the people. I will miss the work. We all worked together. I have met some really nice people over the years and quite a few of them have come to see me after hearing that I was leaving.” 

The business had changed since he first started, he said, adding that it was all "concrete and dirt" but had been built up into a successful garden centre by the Narey family. 

“I have had a good time, a good life here and I have enjoyed myself and had a lot of fun,” Mr Henton added.