Great South Stories: Collectors

With the help of NZ On-air filmmaker Rupert Mackenzie under the working title 'Great South Stories' has taken cameras out to film an eclectic mix of stories about the lives of interesting characters. 

Rupert has compiled 10  insightful and at time's confronting stories that take us up the driveways and behinds doors of those on the famed Great South Road. 

*Watch the full story in the video player below*

I’d heard about this chap who lived at the Franklin end of Great South Road. A 'gentleman' they said, who owned a few nice cars…collectables, in fact. 

This turned out to be slightly misleading. Dave is not a bloke who thinks the term 'gentleman' should apply to him and he owns more than a few cars. 

Dave is old school. A man who makes his living working with his hands – applying his remarkable understanding of mechanics to fix any type of machinery. He describes himself as a 'car man'. 

Walking up the driveway to his beautifully manicured home you see the first tell-tale sign of why. A beautiful Ford truck up on a lift getting a service. In two other garages, Dave shows me a handful of cars in various states of repair Including a classic old Zephyr that looks like it has just rolled off out of the factory. 

Dave is co-owner of the cars with his partner Catherine 'a car lady through and through'. 

They take me to another shed. I am hit with 'sensory overload' as we enter the two-storey building.  

Model cars, commissioned art pieces, old car signs, modern car signs, Ford flags, antique tools, old-school petrol bowsers were all aesthetically placed around an incredible collection of chrome, steel, mirrors and windows that are attached to an eclectic array of American and British classics ranging from the early 20th century through to the 2000s 

The sheer cost, restoration and maintenance of these relics boggled my mind but when you're living the car dream as Dave and Catherine are, it’s not about cost, or the hours spent maintaining and cleaning them. It’s about a shared love of cars of all shapes and sizes. It’s what they do daily on the Great South Road.  

Great South Road is New Zealand’s longest road, starting in Auckland’s swanky shopping quarter of Newmarket and ending in Ohaupo, Waikato Dairy country. 

Used by or home to car dealers, churches, residences, food outlets, farmers, the homeless, street rappers, volunteers, and schools, it is a road that intersects and connects our past, the present, and future.   

Help us create a sustainable future for independent local journalism

As New Zealand moves from crisis to recovery mode the need to support local industry has been brought into sharp relief.

As our journalists work to ask the hard questions about our recovery, we also look to you, our readers for support. Reader donations are critical to what we do. If you can help us, please click the button to ensure we can continue to provide quality independent journalism you can trust.


Newsroom does not allow comments directly on this website. We invite all readers who wish to discuss a story or leave a comment to visit us on Twitter or Facebook. We also welcome your news tips and feedback via email: Thank you.

With thanks to our partners