FORTY years of loyal service paid off for one Fox Bros employee this week when he got the chance to rub shoulders with royalty.

Norman Rogers - described as the Wellington firm's "number 1" warper - was chosen to accompany managing director Jack Hudson and his wife Ann, to a reception at Buckingham Palace on Monday night.

The champagne reception was for winners of the Queen's Award for Enterprise - the award for innovation was given to Fox Bros last year for its high quality lightweight fabrics.

See picture in Friday's County Gazette.