Harrogate Borough Council employee of the year 2014

Knaresborough Castle groundsman Nigel Ellerker, has been named Harrogate Borough Council ‘Employee of the Year’.
The popular gardener was presented with the award, which recognises the outstanding contributions of the council’s most dedicated employees, by Councillor Jim Clark, the Mayor of the Borough of Harrogate, at full council on Thursday 16th July.
Nigel, who has worked for Harrogate Borough Council’s Parks and Gardens team for 33 years, has for the last three years been responsible for maintaining the gardens at Knaresborough Castle, Bebra Gardens and a number of other locations around the town.
Nigel was nominated by the Knaresborough Branch of the Royal British Legion for his restoration of the War Memorial at Knaresborough Castle and its continued maintenance, which he undertakes in his own time, and in recognition of his dedication and professionalism.

On receiving the award Nigel said: This was totally unexpected. I am very honoured to receive this award and I would like to thank the Royal British Legion for nominating me.



It is great to be recognised for something that you love to do.

It is a real pleasure to work alongside my colleagues in the Parks and Gardens team to maintain the gardens of Knaresborough and to bring a touch of colour to the town so that they can be enjoyed by both residents and visitors.

Also recognized were the Waste Collection Project team who received a Management Board Discretionary Award following the successful implementation of the council’s new waste service.

Harrogate Borough Council Employee of the Year & Management Board Discretionary Awards Winners: Left-Right: Jason Turner, Street Cleaner; Nigel Ellerker; Christine Pyatt, Corporate Customer Services Manager; Councillor Jim Clark, the Mayor of the Borough of Harrogate & Susan Gill, Customer Service Advisor.
Left-Right: Jason Turner, Street Cleaner; Nigel Ellerker, winner of Employee of the Year; Councillor Jim Clark, the Mayor of the Borough of Harrogate; Christine Pyatt, Corporate Customer Services Manager; & Susan Gill, Customer Service Advisor

Left-Right: Jason Turner, Street Cleaner; Nigel Ellerker, winner of Employee of the Year; Councillor Jim Clark, the Mayor of the Borough of Harrogate; Susan Gill, Customer Service Advisor & Christine Pyatt, Corporate Customer Services Manager.

Left-Right: Jason Turner, Street Cleaner; Nigel Ellerker, winner of Employee of the Year; Councillor Jim Clark, the Mayor of the Borough of Harrogate; Susan Gill, Customer Service Advisor & Christine Pyatt, Corporate Customer Services Manager

Left-Right: Jason Turner, Street Cleaner; Nigel Ellerker, winner of Employee of the Year; Councillor Jim Clark, the Mayor of the Borough of Harrogate; Susan Gill, Customer Service Advisor & Christine Pyatt, Corporate Customer Services Manager

Since 2011, a large number of staff from across the council – from the Waste Implementation Team who supervised the delivery of 48,000 wheeled bins, to the Customer Services Team, who assisted with queries from residents – have been preparing for, and implementing the new waste service. 69,000 residents in the district have had their waste collection changed, with 64,000 transferring to the new service, which is aimed at boosting recycling, diverting waste from landfill and providing a more consistent cost-effective service. The award was presented to Christine Pyatt, Corporate Customer Services Manager; Jason Turner, Street Cleaner, and Susan Gill, Customer Service Advisor.

Councillor Phil Ireland, Harrogate Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for the Environment, Transport & External Affairs congratulated the winners: I would like to congratulate Nigel. The standard of entries was very high, and represented services from across the council.



It is a real testament to his professionalism that an organisation such as the Royal British Legion should nominate him.

His efforts to restore the war memorial clearly demonstrate that he is the type of person to go above and beyond the call of duty.

His dedication and hard work really makes him a worthy recipient of this award, and he must get a real sense of satisfaction that so many people get to see and enjoy the fruits of his labour.

I am also pleased that the Waste Implementation Team has been recognised for their hard work.

Over the last three years they have worked tirelessly to create a service which has really benefited the district. Our domestic recycling policy is helping us to achieve substantial cost savings to the tax payer of over £724,000 per year, as well as benefiting the environment, with recycling rates having been boosted by an alternate wheeled bin/recycling service to over 40 per cent.

Both the ‘Employee of the Year’ and the ‘Management Board Discretionary Award’ have been presented to thoroughly deserving recipients.


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