A LONG-serving Greenock paramedic has clocked off after nearly five decades spent helping people in emergencies.

William Shaw has called time on a 46-year career with the Scottish Ambulance Service which included everything from delivering babies to bringing his friend back to life.

The 70-year-old started work in May 1973 and recently finished up when he was given a warm send-off by his colleagues at the Greenock station.

The married dad-of-two says it will take some getting used to after such a rollercoaster career.

William said: "I nearly got up for work at six on my first day of retirement.

"I was bored already and had only been off a day!

"I've got mixed emotions after all that time.

"I've brought many Greenockians into the world and I brought my mate back to life - that was front page of the Tele when it happened - and he's still going.

"He still winds me up saying I burnt his chest.

"You get lots of nice stories but sad ones as well. "It was a good job, no doubt about it."

William, who was a team leader technician, began in the accident and emergency side and worked there until 2008 when he moved into patient transport and has always been based in his home town.

Before that, he was a labourer in the local shipyards but says he 'hated it'.

Fortunately the ambulance service was recruiting and it was thanks to the man who would become his father-in-law - through word of mouth in the pub - that he found out about the opportunity.

William lives with his wife Agnes in Burns Road and they have two grown-up sons.

They married a year after he started in the ambulance service and they will celebrate his retirement on a cruise holiday.

The former ambulance driver says the demands of the job played a role in his decision to retire but he plans to keep busy.

He said: "It's more a young boy's game now, there's a lot of lifting.

"I'll maybe do some voluntary work or even see if I can get some part-time work, as long as I'm fit enough to do it."