Hutt City Libraries Online Heritage Collection > Texts

Petone's First 100 Years (1940)


A Business Built by Service.

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One of the oldest carrying firms in Petone, if not the oldest, is that of Messrs. Jas. P. Gaynor and Co., Ltd. In 1895, Mr. James Gaynor, the father of the present managing-director, with a faith in the future of Petone that has been fully justified by the passage of years, commenced business in Sydney Street as a cartage contractor and coal merchant. Those were the days of the horse drawn vehicle, of which Mr. Gaynor possessed two. From such small beginnings has grown the splendid fleet of modern motor
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trucks operated by the company to-day. Mr. James Gaynor died in 1902, since when the business has been carried on under the guidance of his son, Mr. J. P. T. Gaynor.
The rapid expansion of Petone soon necessitated removal to more spacious premises at No. 53 Cuba Street, where, in 1929, a limited company was formed. Prior to its formation into a company, the business had added to its activities that of builders' supply merchants, and in that sphere has gained a very large clientele owing to the excellence and the reliability of its service. The company's operations now cover the whole of Wellington. An indication of satisfactory service afforded the public is the establishment of two branches, one at High Street, and another at Randwick Road, Lower Hutt. It is perhaps noteworthy that the firm of Messrs. Jas. P. Gaynor and Co., Ltd., has on its staff a member of the third generation of the family.
Since very early times, the Gaynor family has been actively engaged in the social services of the community, Mr. James Gaynor, the founder of the business, until his death, and Mr. J. P. T. Gaynor, the present Fire Brigade Superintendent, having been members of the Brigade since its formation in 1881. Mr. James R. Gaynor, Jnr. is also a member of the Brigade. In the field of local politics they have played their part, each succeeding generation having been represented upon the Borough Council. The founder of the business was particularly active in this respect, having rendered long and valuable service, not only on the Council, but in connection with various school and club committees. Mr. James R. Gaynor Jnr. carries on the family tradition of rendering service to the public as a member of the present Council.
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