Last service for St Albans chef Eric

A CHEF from St Albans has decided that at 77 he’s served more than enough meals and is hanging up his apron for good.

Eric Preece has been involved in the catering industry for most of his life and with his own catering business for the last 50 years. He retired for the second – and final – time this month and estimates that over the course of his career he has probably served more than a million meals to people.

Eric, who sold Preece and Burditt Caterers 10 years ago but continued to work for the new owners, said his job had provided him with many happy memories and introduced him to a range of interesting and memorable people, including the Queen, Princess Anne and Seb Coe.

He said: “It’s not the kind of job you do unless you enjoy it and I really did love it. I catered for all types of events and got to meet all types of people and it’s that aspect that I’ll miss the most.”

Eric has provided the catering for wedding receptions, funerals, many work and club events as well as the Mayor’s Banquet for several years. Throughout that time, Eric was often joined by his four sons and even his grandchildren were occasionally called upon to lend a hand with events.

While his retirement may mark the end of an era for the Preece family, it is also the beginning of a new chapter for Eric, originally from London Colney, who is looking forward to a quiet retirement in Northampton which will involve playing more bowls.