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Paul Milner says the forecourt service at Caltex Paeroa had become a “novelty". Photo: GORDON PREECE

Moores Service Station celebrates 90 years


Caltex Paeroa prides itself on pumping ‘novelty’ forecourt service, gallons of food and drink for commuters, and providing a “fun” atmosphere for its staff.
Manager Paul Milner, who has been in the driver’s seat for 23 years, said the business had been in his family since 1932.
“It’s the longest running proper petrol station in Paeroa. Before that it was a setup selling cans from out of a shop and this was the first station that had proper pumps out the front,” he said.
“It started with mum’s father, he bought the business with his brother back in 1932 and then mum and dad took over in the late 70s, but mum had worked here from when she was a teenager as well with her sister.”
Paul said the station offered petrol [91 and 95], diesel, and LPG for cars; gas bottle refills and swaps; air for tyres; furniture, car and caged trailer hire seven days a week, and now had a newly installed pay station so motorists could refuel with petrol and diesel outside opening hours.
“We also still try and offer a forecourt service as much as possible. We have at least two staff on at all times and sometimes three or even four during the busier times so we can get out and pump the gas, wash the windscreens, and check the oil if needed,” he said.
“A lot of people that you see from the city that maybe haven’t been down this way for a while are quite surprised that a service is still offered, so they’re quite happy about that and some see it as a bit of a novelty.”
Paul said the station had seven full time and five to six part time staff and there was always a “fun” atmosphere during their shifts. “It’s not the most glamorous position at times dealing with people but having it as a fun place to come and work makes the day go a lot quicker,” he said.
“We’ve had people who go away from out of town for university and often they’ll come back and work during holidays.
“If you didn’t like it and it wasn’t fun you probably wouldn’t come back, so to have those people continually coming back is a sign we’re doing things well.”
Paul said he and his staff hoped for a high octane summer.
“Hopefully we should get some fine weather coming through, sell lots of ice creams and bags of ice,” he said.
“We’re selling our own ice which we bag on site now because we’ve had struggles the last three or four years getting ice supply at times, so we bit the bullet and spent some money and got a full modern ice machine that makes up to 900kg a day. “[Customers are also] more into wanting a bit of fishing tackle when they’re off in the morning, so we stock that sort of thing, and good coffee is important now for people.”
Paul said the station also supplied good quality pies, fresh sandwiches and a range of drinks, including more sugar free options for summer motorists.

Caltex Paeroa in 1949. Photo: SUPPLIED