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Familiar face . . . Capri Restaurant owner Steven Tutty and Dawn Bayne, aka "Mrs Capri", have many happy memories of Mrs Bayne's service at the front counter of Gore's Capri Restaurant. PHOTO: SANDY EGGLESTON

BY SANDY EGGLESTON

The Gore woman affectionately known as “Mrs Capri” is leaving the restaurant business. Dawn Bayne retired yesterday after working at the Capri for more than 40 years.

Mrs Bayne said she started working in the restaurant kitchen just after John and Carol Tutty took over the business.

“I worked from 3 [pm] and I worked through ’til closing and then I had all the clean-up.”

After several years she was offered a position at the front counter serving customers.

“I love the front. I love people. I’m a people’s person.”

She was a well-known identity in the restaurant.

“They actually call me Mrs Capri.

“I’ve made some very good friends just through the shop.”

She enjoyed talking with the customers, some of whom were “hard case” characters.

“I’m afraid I give them a hard time – you can tell who to give a hard time to and who not to.

“They give it back to me, don’t worry.”

Looking after her customers was very important to her, Mrs Bayne said.

“There’s nothing nicer than helping someone else and making them smile.”

In her time at the Capri, she had had three employers – John and Carol Tutty, Andy and Maria Lawrence and now Steven and Jacinta Tutty.

“I’ve been so lucky – I’ve had such good bosses and people to work with.

“You don’t stay where you’re not appreciated.”

Present owner Steven Tutty, along with his brothers Brendon, Simonand Mark, worked for their parents John and Carol in the restaurant after school when the boys were younger.

Mrs Bayne said she had “grown up with the kiddies – when I started here, Simon was only a tiny wee boy.

“They were never ever allowed to call me Dawn.

“We used to have a lot of fun.”

There had been some funny moments throughout the years, especially in the days when the centre part of Main St was used for parking.

“We would finish work about nine ‘clock and sit here and watch all the action going on in the centre parks.

“That was our entertainment for the week – there used to be some fun going on out there.”

Mrs Bayne remembered one young employee who on her first day of work at the restaurant asked if she could go and pick up her bike.

“She never came back – it’s not for everybody. [People] don’t realise how busy the place is.

“I thought it was quite hilarious.”

She would like to carry on working.

“I enjoy it so much but I feel now it’s time for me to go on to the next phase of my life, so I am going to do volunteer work.”

A trip to Canada and Alaska was another of her retirement plans.

“I do love travelling.”