Banker celebrates 35 years with Natwest in Norfolk and Suffolk

Donna Lash is celebrating 35 years at Natwest, where she has worked at the Thetford, Diss and Bury S

Donna Lash is celebrating 35 years at Natwest, where she has worked at the Thetford, Diss and Bury St Edmunds branches. Picture: Rebecca Murphy - Credit: Archant

The world of banking has changed since Donna Lash started as a 16-year-old.

The personal banker at Natwest in Thetford has seen finance move from being manually led to being online-based.

But as she celebrates 35 years with the company, Mrs Lash said she enjoys her job as much as she ever has.

'My dad said to me when I started my job that it would be a job for life,' said the 51-year-old. 'But I never imagined I would be here for 35 years.

'There was one computer when I started and no internet or debit cards. Everything was done by hand - used to print the cheque books.

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'Some of the challenges have been adapting to the new ways. Sometimes it takes a while to accept the change but it has been gradual change and it has been good.'

She added: 'There have been a lot of changes in the banking world and the clientele in Thetford but we all work hard.'

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Mrs Lash, who lives in Coney Weston, started at the Thetford branch as a junior when she left school.

She spent time at the branches in Diss and Bury St Edmunds, where she was business manager, before moving back to work in the Breckland town.

Mrs Lash said: 'It has given me a lifestyle. My sons have seen my career and my work and it is a good example.

'It has been a lovely journey and it has been amazing really. It has been a big part of my life.'

Mrs Nash's colleagues surprised her with cake, balloons and cards.

She said: 'I am very grateful to the support my colleagues have given me. I no way expected this. I am very humbled for what people have done for me.'

A book was set aside for customers to leave their messages with many offering their congratulations to the banker as they visited the branch.

'You make great friendships with people over the years,' she said. 'The customers become friends. You get lots of lovely customers and they are part of your little journey.'

The personal banker said she has no plans to retire yet and believes the bank has a future in Thetford.

She said: 'We have been in the high street for a while and we hope we will continue for a lot longer. The outside image of banks is not always positive but inside we care for our customers.'

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