A CHAPTER in the 26-year history of Moors Valley Country Park closed recently with the retirement of a much-loved staff member.

Information officer Pam Martin spent 16 years greeting visitors to the park, near Ringwood, offering advice and information to families.

Pam began working at Moors Valley in 1998 and, over the years, has researched the history of Kings Farm, the site on which the country park was created, and the old bar, which became the Visitor Centre.

She was also instrumental in monitoring the bird count in the park and has seen the number of species increase from 113 to 137 during her 16 years there, counting the sighting of a stray flamingo, a great bustard and a blue budgie among her many memorable bird-related moments.

Pam is retiring to spend more time with her husband and three grandsons. But she will return to Moors Valley as a volunteer so she can keep taps on the growing bird population.

She said: “I have always enjoyed the hustle and bustle of Moors Valley and I am delighted to have seen it grow.”