Allied Press distribution manager Warren Godfrey tosses a newspaper from a delivery van for the last time yesterday, as he retires after more than 49 years. Photo by Stephen Jaquiery.
A colourful five-decade career in newspapers has provided
Warren Godfrey with ''hundreds'' of stories, but the Allied
Press distribution manager is leaving the job with his
''I could tell you about the pussy cat, the twin brothers ...
there are hundreds of stories I could tell you, but they are
all classified,'' he said.
Mr Godfrey celebrated his 65th birthday this week and last
night walked away for the last time from the Lower Stuart St
building where he had spent almost 50 years.
As a 15-year-old, Mr Godfrey started full-time employment as
a linotype mechanic for the Evening Star on February 13,
The rise of computer technology changed the course of his
career in the late 1970s and early 1980s, when he moved from
''hot metal'' to ''cold metal''.
He then sought further change in 1985 when he successfully
applied for the vacant position of Allied Press circulation
In 2009 he was made distribution manager.
Born and raised in Dunedin, Mr Godfrey said his father was a
motor mechanic and the prospect of working seven-day weeks,
often on call, did not appeal.
But someone else was having the last laugh, he said, as he
talked about the pressures of delivering an average 50,000
papers on time each day.
''All I've ever wanted is for the paper to come out at the
same time every day. You only get one chance to deliver a
Flooding and heavy snowfalls were among a long list of
unforeseen happenings which hampered delivery operations
through the years. Mr Godfrey remembered transporting
newspapers from Cromwell to Queenstown and Wanaka by
helicopter when flooding prevented road travel over much of
''I've had horrendous fun. I've never thought of doing
anything else. If I had my chance again, I would make the
same mistake,'' he said.
Mr Godfrey had had ''hundreds of good people'' under his
management and had met hundreds more through his job.
He would miss ''everything'' about the work and did not know
what retirement would entail.
''Watch this space.''