I live in a Royal palace - but am giving it up for the Suffolk countryside
- Credit: Archant
Living in the Tower of London is perhaps one of the biggest perks of any job.
But Bob Loughlin is set to give it all up - so he can retire to the beautiful Suffolk countryside.
For the past 12 years, Mr Loughlin has been one of the most familiar sights at the iconic British tourist attraction as Yeoman Gaoler, heading up a team showing tourists around the famous building.
The job comes with a striking uniform, famous hat and ceremonial axe, while his duties include organising state parades and ceremonies.
However the 65-year-old is planning to hang up his robes and hand in his keys to the famous building so he spend his retirement in Suffolk.
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Mr Loughlin said he felt "honoured and proud" to have served in the role since 2007, as well as preside over a team of 36 Yeoman Warders - or beefeaters, as they are known - since 2018.
"I feel honoured and proud to have served not only as a Yeoman Gaoler here at the Tower but also to have achieved 50 years in uniform having served with all three military services," he said.
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"Whenever anybody has asked me over the last 12 years if I'm happy I've always said: 'Of course, I live in a royal palace!' Not many people can say that, and I feel truly privileged to have worked in a place steeped in history.
"I'm looking forward to my retirement and whilst I'm hoping to keep busy it will be incredible to look back on what has been an absolutely fantastic experience."
Mr Loughlin's role at the Tower of London followed 22 years of dedicated military service, during which he served in Northern Ireland, Kuwait, Belize, Afghanistan and various locations around the UK.
He enrolled in the Royal Navy when he was just 15-years-old as a boy soldier and joined the RAF just two years later, being awarded a British Empire Medal by HM The Queen for his service in 2001.
To become a Yeoman, one is first required to complete 22 years of military service.
So few people have been Yeoman Gaolers that there there have been more presidents of the United States and more people in space.
Yeoman Serjeant Jim Duncan has been selected to take over from Bob Loughlin and said he was extremely proud to be taking on the infamous role but added: "I've got a tough act to follow and some big boots to fill."