A VETERAN councillor has been recognised for four decades years of service.

Current mayor Jackie Pell was commended for 40 years as a part of Halstead Town Council at a council meeting on Monday evening.

A town council spokesman said: “At the meeting of Halstead Town Council on Monday Councillor Jackie Pell, the current chairman of the council, was presented with a crystal plaque to commemorate her 40 continuous years serving as a councillor, by deputy chairman Peter Caulfield.

“She was previously mayor from 1990-93 and 2005-6.

“She said how much she had enjoyed her work as councillor over the years, working for her community.”

Mrs Pell added: “I didn’t even know - if I had known I would have dressed up more.

“It was such a surprise, I was just stunned.

“You don’t do things for awards, and town councillors are all volunteers, we don’t get paid.

“I was stuck for words for a minute, but I am so grateful they even thought to give it to me, to be seen in high regards by peers.

“It doesn’t seem such a long time, but time flies when you’re having fun I guess, and I love what I do. I love helping and talking to people.

“I showed it to my family and they were thrilled.

“I am not stopping any time soon, as long as my health stays with me. I am 76 after all.

“At the end of the day, it is down to the people. They have got to want you to do it, and its thanks to them for electing me and allowing me to do what I enjoy.”