Christine Varley from Ramsbottom arrived late on her first day at Bury’s Volkswagen retailer, but survived and is now considered ‘part of the furniture’ at Smith Knight Fay.
The 63-year-old was presented with a bottle of champagne and flowers from the company’s UK head, Conor McCormack, in a pre-planned surprise visit.
“I only work part-time now and was getting ready to go home when Conor to surprised me to thank me for my service.
“I was very shocked but delighted with the wonderful flowers and champagne; it’s an honour the company’s boss has spent time coming to see me
“Since my husband Stephen died my job means everything to me and I have some good friends here. The atmosphere is brilliant and it’s like working as part of my extended family.”
But it all could have been so different for Christine after getting lost on her first day in 1980.
She added: “I didn’t think I’d last the rest of the week after arriving late, never mind 30 years!
“Everyone has been brilliant about my anniversary, it’s one of the reasons I come to work every day with a smile on my face.
“Will I be here in another 30 years? We’ll have to wait and see!”
Smith Knight Fay Bury’s brand manager, Steve Thomas, said: “Christine is part of the furniture here and everyone enjoys working with her.
“Conor’s surprise visit had been planned months in advance and he felt it was important to thank Christine for all her hard work, enthusiasm and dedication to her job.”