Service with a smile
Ask anyone in and around Onehunga, and nine times out of ten they will know of Baz the Postie. Barry MacGroucutt has dedicated almost two decades of his life to the job as the local postman. He does the job through rain or shine, and always with a smile.
The popular postman is best known as Santa on Wheels during the Christmas season, and some have even called him an Onehunga icon! There was even a suggestion from a member of the public to have an image of his signature bike helmet (featuring Donald Duck) as a new logo for Onehunga.
A recent post about him on the Onehunga Business Association Facebook page left him feeling humble after reading the messages and comments of gratitude from the community. Many thanked him for his years of service, and for going above and beyond to get the job done; others shared fond memories and stories about him. He says, “I get a kick out of making people smile when I’m out and about. I just want everyone to be happy. I especially love the banter, and it’s always nice when people take the time to stop and say hello to me on the street.”
Over the years, Baz has watched the neighbourhood change. As a child he attended Te Papapa Primary School, then Manukau Intermediate (now Royal Oak Intermediate), before completing his schooling at Penrose High (One Tree Hill College). In his free time, he has visited local kindergartens to share stories about his life as a postman, taking lollies for the children; he always carries treats for pets he meets along his run. He proudly keeps a folder filled to the brim with newspaper clippings of his life as a postman, with notes and cards from residents he now calls friends.
Baz says, “I just love the people, and I love the history. Onehunga is steeped in so much history, it’s everywhere you go. There are streets and parks named after many great people who came before us. We’re all so lucky to call this place home. I couldn’t imagine myself anywhere else.”
(Baz the Postie is world famous in Onehunga)