THERE are many cogs in The South Wales Guardian machine, but none more important than the first face that greets visitors to the newspaper’s Quay Street office.

Angela Morris has been the face of the Guardian for a career spanning six decades.

While the 65-year-old from Tycroes cannot quite boast having been present from day one, Angela has worked with every editor throughout Guardian history, from Gwynne Evans, the newspaper’s founder, to current incumbent Steve Adams.

Angela joined the Guardian team from school in 1966, as – in her words – “a proofreader and general dog’s body”.

“We used to be in an old cottage on the other side of Quay Street,” she recalls.

“There was only an outside toilet at the bottom of the garden and no hot water.”

Her work was exemplary, but Angela’s fashion sense often saw her getting on the wrong side of Mr Evans.

“I got in a bit of trouble quite often for coming to work in mini-skirts – the editor’s wife Florrie used to spend all day wearing her hat and coat.”

It is not just the fashions that have changed.

“The Guardian is a completely different thing now.

“The paper was a broadsheet when I started and the printworks was out the back – it was in the days of hot metal.

“The worst day of my life was when the computers arrived.

Although Angela’s role at the Guardian has primarily been on the administration side of the operation, she was never averse to getting involved with the editorial department.

“I used to write court reports,” she said.

“I would catch the bus to Llandovery and sit in the courtroom all day.

“It has been a lot of fun and I have thoroughly enjoyed coming to work every day – I would not have been here all this time if I didn’t.”

Angela’s contribution to the Guardian might go unnoticed by much of the newspaper-buying public, but behind the scenes, she reigns supreme as the queen of the South Wales Guardian.

“Editors, reporters and members of the sales team come and go, but rain or shine, Angela is always here,” said Steve.

“She is the font of all knowledge, about both the history of the newspaper and the Amman Valley.

“She is the thread which links the Guardian of today with its origins.

“More importantly though, she is a lovely person.

“Angela is a joy and a privilege to work with and I will be eternally grateful for the support, insight and advice she has offered me during my time at the Guardian both as reporter and editor.

“Angela is the Guardian.”