Allison is a digital reporter for the Bay of Plenty Times

Store customers agree ... Jeff's a trolley good fella

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PUSHING THE BOSS AROUND: Jeff Henwood, master trolley man at Brookfield New World, with owner operator Brendon Good, celebrates 25 years in the job today. PHOTO/JOHN BORREN
PUSHING THE BOSS AROUND: Jeff Henwood, master trolley man at Brookfield New World, with owner operator Brendon Good, celebrates 25 years in the job today. PHOTO/JOHN BORREN

If you have shopped at Brookfield New World in the past 25 years chances are you have been greeted by the same smiling man mustering the shopping trolleys.

Today marks Jeff Henwood's 25th year of being master of the trolleys at the popular supermarket and during that time he has become an identity in the community.

When the Bay of Plenty Times Weekend caught up with Jeff yesterday in his territory, the carpark, every person who wheeled past with their trolley said hello and had a warm smile for him.

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Starting at the supermarket when he was 18, Jeff said a lot of people had got used to him as a part of their shopping experience.

"A lot of people say it's not the same without me, if I've been away or gone on holiday," he said.

It was not only the work he enjoyed, wrangling the trolleys, sometimes more than 10 at a time, it was the people and customers he got to see and talk to on a daily basis that was the best part.

He is out there, rain or shine, helping customers put their shopping in their cars, offering umbrellas, having a chat and generally making everyone feel welcome and special.
Brendon Good, owner operator

"I always put the customer first."

Rounding up hundreds of trolleys every day in any weather for 25 years was not for the faint-hearted but Jeff shrugged it off, saying it just came with the job.

He had never thought about leaving.

Owner operator of the store Brendon Good said Jeff was well-known and well-loved by everyone.

"He is out there, rain or shine, helping customers put their shopping in their cars, offering umbrellas, having a chat and generally making everyone feel welcome and special."

Mr Good might own the store, but when it came to the carpark and trolleys, Jeff was the boss.

"He takes real pride in his job. We get so many customers telling us how great he is."

A testament to his influence on customers, Jeff gets tips every Christmas, thanking him for looking after them throughout the year.

"He hands it all in to me but I just give it all back to him. He deserves every cent," Mr Good said.

An integral part of Brookfield New World, Jeff was planning to stick around, "he wouldn't hand his job over to anyone, he wouldn't trust them to do it as well as he does," Mr Good said .

Handling the shopping carts was not always the easiest task, which anyone could relate to, but Jeff had it down to a fine art, Mr Good said.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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