One of the moving industry’s longest serving employees retires this year after 50 years’ uninterrupted service.
Roy O’Hara, Senior Packer and Warehouseman at DT Moving, (formerly Davies Turner Worldwide Movers) is due to retire. With 50 years’ service under his belt he must surely be the moving industry’s longest serving employee.
Roy joined Davies Turner in 1962 as a 15-year-old trainee and has been at the company ever since. He was born in Battersea in 1947 and joined the post room at Davies Turner’s Battersea depot, on Queenstown Rd, just a stone’s throw from his family home. In those days new employees could only join the company if an existing family member worked there. Fortunately Roy’s cousin Kity worked for the company so he could apply.
Following a brief period in the post room, Roy spent 3 years’ warehouse training in ‘antiques packing’, something that all Davies Turner packing personnel were obliged to do before they were permitted to work at customer premises. Roy looks back on this period with great fondness.
“Davies Turner and now DT Moving has always had the best packing processes and packing materials. The quality training we all underwent was priceless, meaning we were experts in our craft, and this is something we have tried to pass on to all new starters at DT.”
During the 1970s and 80s Roy spent time abroad and was responsible for shipments to and from Europe and the Middle East. In this time he met and worked for some very famous people, including Elton John, Rod Stewart and Ginger Rogers. One particular job that sticks in Roy’s mind was for Her Majesty the Queen.
“In the early 1980s we collected, packed and delivered a series of paintings and artwork for the Queen and the Queen Mother. Much of the work was carried out at Buckingham Palace, which was an interesting experience ... we didn’t get to see the Queen or the Corgis though!”
More recently, Roy’s work has been based in the warehouse at Mitcham, Greater London, where he is responsible for antique packing and export packing. The warehouse-based role means Roy can spend more time with his daughter and more time watching his beloved Chelsea football club on the TV.
DT Moving’s Managing Director Nick Kerr is full of praise for Roy. “To work uninterrupted at the same organisation for 50 years is a remarkable achievement and is testament to Roy’s character. Apart from being a fantastic packer and a real company man he is a great personality with a wonderful sense of humour. Roy will be sadly missed once he retires.”
Roy’s last few months at DT Moving will be celebrated with a company day at the races and a presentation afternoon to acknowledge his wonderful service to the company.
Photo: Roy pictured with Nick Kerr, DT’s managing director.