Meet The Team
These are the people who will make such a difference to your stay with us. We are proud of them all and are delighted to call them "Our Team".
When John and Joanne arrived at Queensberry Bay back in 2001 it's fair to say they had absolutely no idea what was in store. That was probably a good thing – there's a lot to be said at times for putting a paper bag on your head, digging a deep hole and jumping in with your eyes closed.
It was though, it has to be said, a baptism of fire ...
Joanne, a chartered accountant, like most accountants thought she knew everything there was to know about business. And John, a farmer and businessman thought he'd seen it all. How wrong they were!
John deals with the day to day maintenance of the park as well as any major development work and siting new vans. If you’re looking for John, look first for the dogs - his "entourage" - John won’t be far away!
Joanne also runs an accountancy practice from the farm house so, if you don’t see her, she’s most likely adding up a column of figures somewhere. With her head in a paper bag. Both of them take the running of Queensberry Bay very seriously - and want to hear from you if anything is not just so.
Nicola's been with us off and on since she was just a wee lassie, when she had a Saturday job. Now she's the mother of two – and still doesn't look a day over 17!
When she was at college Nicola trained in accounts - but for some reason found accounts "boring" - and now spends her days politely answering questions like "How wet does it get on the beach?" or "Where can I put my 60 foot camper van?" Apparently she finds this job more interesting ...
We were delighted when Nicola decided to come back to work after her second maternity leave - the place just wasn't the same without her.
Nicola has grown with us over the years and has trained what feels like half of Annan in our booking package – the trials and tribulations of a seasonal business – yet each time the question is asked she patiently explains once again the difference between a tourer and a camper, and between touring and camping and letting, and why the mouse has disappeared from the shop desk once again and where we keep the spare.
In her time here Nicola has moved from front office to cleaning and back again – more than anyone else Nicola knows how each part of the business works - so you'll see her popping up on reception every now and then.
Pauline's been with us for 294 years give or take the odd weekend. Every year she retires - and every year we manage to convince her that we can't cope without her.
Now in her 70s, Pauline’s beginning to get stroppier about this – but Joanne says we'll do all it takes to keep her here – even if that means propping her up against the counter for the season, feeding her a diet of her favourite ready salted crisps.
Why do we love her so much? Because, when things get stressful - as they do from time to time, believe it or not - Pauline has that wonderful innate Lancashire ability to make you laugh - usually because she’s taken the cordless mouse home in her handbag ("Don’t we have one each?") or is trying to scan a barcode with the stapler ("It's stopped working again Nicola").
Pauline's part of the furniture at Queensberry Bay – and if ever she leaves us for good we'll just have to sell up - so please cherish her as much as we do!
Now, our Andrew's a bit of an enigma. If he'd been born a couple of generations earlier we're fairly sure Andrew would have led his troops on camel back across the windswept Arabian sand dunes in a ghutra.
As it is he works at Queensberry Bay - but if you do happen to spot him riding our llamas across the windswept Powfoot sand bars in a Queensberry Bay tee shirt you’d best let us know (especially if he’s not got his hard hat on). Blood will out, after all.
Our Andrew's been everywhere - you name the country, he's been there. He was even a stunt man, riding motorbikes through flaming hoops! But he doesn't brag - truly enigmatic people don't - you just notice in conversation how very well travelled he is.
And if ever you're looking for a winner for the local general knowledge pub quiz - Andrew's your man - and he makes his own wine and beer so he'll be cheap to take along too!
Andrew applied to us in 2009 for an admin role - but it must have been in error because he's way out of our league. We spotted his talents and he now works most of the time with John and Dan on grounds and as part of the Pets Corner Team - so don't shake hands, particularly at lambing time - but we also make him work in the shop from time to time to remind him of his mistake ...
Our sales man made a huge difference to our business in all manner of ways - and made a difference to Dan because we found ourselves looking for an extra pair of hands just as Dan was looking for a job.
Dan is one of those guys that you just know has a more interesting social life than you do: he doesn't say that of course - he doesn't have to - but he's definitely got us older ladies fondly reminiscing about those Saturday nights of yore - Blind Date followed by a night at the Disco.
Dan works with Andrew and John and you'll see him leaping on and off tractors, sawing wood for decks or helping out with the animals.
Dan lives in Powfoot - so you may also see him cycling to work. Do give him a wide berth – he'll have had a better night than the rest of us that’s for sure!
Salv joined us in 2012. And then came back in 2013. How odd is that for a Queensberry Bay salesman??
His full name, would you believe, is Salvador Fernando McDonald. We asked how come he had such a fancy name and he told us his parents had fled here after the Spanish Inquisition. So that makes his middle name Dorian Gray as well!
Salv's been in the business for more than a decade, starting out as a door to door salesman and then moving on to work for Barrons for several years. He knows a thing or two about sales in general and Holiday Homes in particular. And he actually cares about what he does!
Salv's a real gentleman, a family man - and he's married to a chartered accountant so he knows when to keep his head down ...
Pam's been with us for many years. She says she's our cleaner - but she's actually so much more than that: she's our head house keeper, our shop staff agony aunt and our grounds staff motivator - Pam chasing Andrew and Dan with a broom when they've made a mess in the staff room is indeed a sight for sore eyes!
Pam's one of those people who will turn their hand to anything - so out of main season you may see her answering the phone ("where’s Nicola gone now??"), painting ("the lads just don't do it right"), gardening ("can't they see those weeds??"), and giving the grounds lads a good telling off when they walk through her lovely clean toilets in muddy boots ("**** **** ****!").
Visitors often ask Pam why we don't leave a mop in the showers. Pam's reply is - "Because then I’d be out of a job!" And the fact is that no one can do the job to Pam's (or our) standard.
Pam's always busy - so don't stand too close as the chances are you'll be polished along with the taps!
Pamela's is a face you won’t see too often – or at least not on our side of the counter - but you'll definitely recognize the voice!
Truth be told, Pamela works in Joanne's accountancy practice – the "posh bit" - at the farm house doing accounts and bookkeeping and generally keeping on top of the pile of papers that Joanne leaves on her desk when she's not looking.
Pamela previously worked for a proper firm in Carlisle where they had strategy meetings and team building exercises – and now works at a place where our long term planning strategy is whose turn it is to make the tea and our team building exercises are based around catching the emus when they escape.
Like the rest of us, Pamela's day is split into a million unrelated parts and, in addition to her accounts and VAT work she answers the park phones when Nicola’s busy with treatments. Despite working for the "posh bit" Pamela is very much a part of the Queensberry Bay team – and even has a touring van here so when she’s not in the office you'll see her out and about with the family.
Sandra joined us in the shop / reception in 2012. Sandra is not as - shall we say delicate? - as our Nicola. She calls a spade a spade and a roll tank a shit bucket. But she is one of the most willing people we have met. Ask her to turn the spa and the words won't be out before she's back. Ask her to get you a phone number and she’ll have found it, printed it and laminated it before you've got to the postcode.
Sandra used to work at the newsagents in Gretna, so she knows a thing or two about people and a fair bit about newspapers! This is helpful at weekends, when Pauline helps sort out the Sunday papers and you never really know what you’re going to get. Or when.
Sandra has two children and, would you believe, went to school with Nicola who also has two children.
Must be something in the water.
If Andrew was crossing the Arabian Desert in a past life then our Cathy was a Labrador puppy.
Cathy loves everyone and everything and is quite possibly the kindest, happiest and most sensible person we've ever taken on. This can be trying for us mere mortals ...
Cathy joined us in 2009 and she says that the people and animals here just aren't "knitted up right". She says that's why she fits in so well.
This is Cathy in uniform for one our Mexican cheese and wine dos.
Although Cathy doesn’t work with us now - she left in 2012 following a bout of illness - we still miss her and regard her as part of the team. Cathy may not have been the fastest on the team when it came to the computer - but my goodness she was the nicest of the lot of us!
Eric (and Rupert)
OK - so maybe they aren't fully paid up members of the team - and Rupert in particular (seen here on the left with the dodgy ear) can be a bit crabbed in the morning so he's no good on the front desk - but Eric and his gang are as much a part of Queensberry Bay as our Pauline and the wind (although she’s on medication for that now).