A Whanganui freezing works will be turning 100 later this year.

And two former employees are planning a reunion to mark Affco Imlay's big milestone.

Brian Cadogan was plant manager from 1967 to 1991, while Geoff Sarginson worked there from 1952 to 1999.

"We felt we couldn't let 100 years go by without doing something," Mr Sarginson said. "It's been a magnificent place to work over the years, and a place of interest for many Whanganui people."


Imlay has traditionally been one of Whanganui's largest employers, and Mr Sarginson said in its heyday of the 1970s and '80s it employed around 1000 people.

Mr Sarginson said he knew of several families who were up to their fourth generation; his own family's association with Imlay spans three generations.

The New Zealand Refrigerating Company opened its Imlay plant in November 1916, although its official opening did not happen until the following month.

Mr Cadogan said there seemed to be a lot of interest in holding a reunion.

"We had one in 2011 and people there said they were looking forward to the centenary."

He said around 500 people had turned up for that reunion, which was held at Wanganui Racecourse.

The Wanganui Chronicle was unable to contact Imlay management to confirm if an official reunion or event would be held for the centenary.