HE’S been a fixture at the same St Helens school for the last 25 years... and he’s never had a day off.
No wonder then that staff and pupils at St Augustine of Canterbury High will be sad to see personal social health education (PSHE) subject leader Ian Davies retire at the end of this week.
Amazingly, the 58-year-old will complete his 25-year stint at the Boardmans Lane school with a perfect 100 per cent attendance record.
In fact, in his entire 37-year teaching career, Mr Davies has only ever had one week off - when he contracted the mumps aged 29 - and even then he returned to work a week earlier than doctors had planned!
He said: “I’ve just been very lucky not to catch any serious illnesses during my time at St Augustine’s. I wouldn’t say I’ve never felt ill, but I always think it’s only right and proper to get in to work if I possibly can.
“It also helps that my time at St Augustine’s has been extremely happy. I can’t sing the praises of this school highly enough.”
Mr Davies, of Grange Park, worked at St Albans School in Haresfinch for 12 years before switching to St Augustine’s in 1987.
A huge rugby fan, he has also helped to run the school teams and even spent two years as the manager of the English Schools Under 16s - tutoring the likes of Gary Wheeler and Jamie Foster (pictured) as well as Andrew Dixon,, Joe Westerman and Liam Farrell.
He also rates the St Augustine’s year sevens’ win over St Peter’s, Orrell, in the Powergen Schools Rugby curtain raiser for the 2003 Challenge Cup Final among his proudest moments.
The father-of-two and grandfather-of-one admits, though, that it did help that the team’s captain that day was future Saints star Lee Gaskell!
He added: “I’ve had fantastic support from my colleagues and the Blackbrook community over the years and I’m sure it will feel strange when September comes around and I’m on holiday instead of being in work. I think I’ve made the right decision though.
“And I still hope to come back and run a couple of PE lessons and help out with a couple of rugby teams.”
St Augustine’s headteacher, Linda Mousdale, said: “Ian will be sadly missed for his commitment and dedication to the students, to the Blackbrook community and to the town with St Helens Schools rugby league.
“He has an exemplary record and we’re all very proud of his achievements. Thankfully, we’re not cutting ties with him completely though because he’s still going to do some rugby work with the boys after school.”