MENZSHED NZ representative for region 5 Otago/Southland.
I was born and bought up in Gore and trained as a wool classer. I shifted to Invercargill 1978 where I worked at Ocean Beach Freezing Co until I had a fairly serious car accident and then went to Mobil Oil where I started as a dispatcher then became the Terminal Supervisor at Bluff and then Dispatch Supervisor back in Invercargill.
In 1988 my wife Jennie and I shifted to Alexandra when we purchased a Coffee Bar and catering business which we sold it in 2003 and since then I have been more or less semi retired. We have three sons, two living in Mosgiel and one in Alexandra.
I first heard of Men’s Sheds when visiting family in Mosgiel and went to have a look the day they opened the Taieri Blokes Shed. I spoke to Phil Bradshaw who was the main force in starting this shed and he offered to come up to Alex anytime to talk at a meeting.
Phil finally came up in August 2010 when I thought that there may have been a Council building available. We had 10 men at the first meeting and although we did not get the building we wanted we stayed in touch. A building [an old MoW office from the Roxburgh Dam 1956] finally became available in 2011 which we bought for $2000. We got a grant of $20,000 from the Lotteries Commission to shift the building and we finally opened the Alexandra Men’s Shed in 2012.