Now well into his sixties, Neil McCormack is quite possibly the oldest new roofer in the country.
Keith Ivey from CS Roofing first met McCormack in the mid 1970s, when they both worked on the slaughter chains at the Alliance Freezing Works in Invercargill.
He says McCormack eventually got sick of the freezing works and, just over 10 years ago, approached him for a full-time position at CS Roofing.
McCormack celebrated his tenth anniversary with the company in October last year, just a month after receiving his National Certificate in Metal Roofing and Wall Cladding. He was first enrolled in 2014.
“At times, it has taken a bit of cajoling by my operations manager Shaun Harris and myself to get him across the line, but he has stuck with it and achieved his qualification, at the age of 67,” Ivey says. “So I am claiming to have the oldest apprentice in NZ. Can anyone beat that?
“Neil is a strong and fit roofer, who leads the younger guys by example, getting stuck into his work, and taking no ‘crap’. He is an asset to the business, and proof that age is no barrier to getting a qualification.”
Ivey says his company has done a lot of re-roofing work at the Alliance Freezing Works, so he always gets McCormack to lead the team on site, as he knows his way around the place so well.
• Story courtesy of RANZ’s Rooflink magazine.