What does a company buy for an employee who's racked up 70 years service?
After buying Wilfred Lilley a carriage clock for his 60th anniversary, that's the problem facing managers at the Birmingham manufacturer S Lilley & Son. The firm, which was founded by Simeon Lilley in 1862, has certainly lived up to and probably exceeded its name.
For Wilfred Lilley is the third generation to work at the company, which now also employs his son and grandson.
He said: "I joined in 1935, and the day after my birthday my father said go and see your grandad.
"I went to see him on the Sunday, and he said you can start at 8am on the Monday.
"I've been there ever since." Mr Lilley originally worked in the tool room of the Digbeth factory before he eventually became managing director at the firm which makes brass lampholders, turned parts, and brass pressings.
During his time the company was bombed out of its premises in Alcester Street in 1940, and is now facing a threat from cheaper production in China.
He said: "This has always been a family business. It was set up originally by my great grandfather in 1862, and my grandfather Alfred took it over in 1890. During the First World War we made armaments, parts for friction tubes which were used in artillery and respirators.
"We were bombed in 1940, but we managed to eventually get going again.
"The company has modernised a lot during my time. At one time it was all overhead shafting with treadmill operated machines, but during the Second World War we started converting to motorised machines."
The company now employs 30 people, compared with 60 in earlier years.
He said: "I'm chairman now, and I like to come, have a look around and discuss things. I come in on Mondays and Fridays and do one or two jobs they have forgotten how to do.
"I can sort out some of the machines because I understand them; I bought all of them myself.
"I've never really thought about retiring. It's a family business, so there is no need and I enjoy keeping in touch. I watched it all being built up during the war years." Mr Lilley's son John is managing director, while his nephews and grandsons work at the company.
For his birthday tomorrow Mr Lilley said there would be a family celebration at a restaurant, following a big celebration for his 80th birthday four years ago at the factory.
Grandson Craig Lilley said: "He comes in to make sure the rest of use are behaving ourselves; he likes to keep an eye on things.
"China is having a big impact on the lighting business, and it has been a lot quieter. We have done a lot more local work with smaller volumes. We are having some things made in China - it's the only way to survive."
Mr Lilley added: "It is impressive he has been here this long. Some people just hand it over and relax, but he wants to keep an eye on it.
"My son's only just started school, but maybe he will work here too." Wilfred Lilley said: "I've enjoyed the work, it is a family run business with good employees. I never thought about leaving.
"I suppose it has been a job for life. I got a carriage clock when I did 50 years, but I don't know what I'm going to get for 70 years.
"I'll probably have to buy something myself."