Joan Johnson steps down after 60 years
From her first tour to Fort William to her last in Llandudno, Joan Johnson - described as the matriarch of Johnsons Coach & Bus Travel - has travelled the length and breadth of Britain, but now after 60 years she has finally decided to hang up her clipboard.
Joining the Henley-in-Arden business in 1956, when the firm was only operating three coaches, a furniture removal lorry and a taxi, Joan juggled bringing up her five children with office work and coach driving, becoming one of the first female coach drivers in the UK.
Her career as a holiday courier started in 1981 when she and her son John operated the company’s first inclusive tour. Since then she has escorted more than 350 tours to places all over the UK, Europe and the world.
The business has won many coach industry awards and celebrated 100 years in business in 2009.
“I have enjoyed every minute of it and will miss working with our friendly drivers, lovely customers, all the friends I have made over the years,” says Joan Johnson.
Her son John Johnson and fellow director adds: “Mum’s probably done an average of just about ten tours a year for the last 35 years, so that must be about 350 tours. And to just about everywhere in Britain and Europe and many places worldwide too. Mum has always been available to help at short notice too, so she may need her clipboard again at some time.”