A WARRNAMBOOL service station with a history that stretches back to at least the 1960s has closed.

A Caltex spokesperson said site, on the corner of Raglan Parade and Kepler Street, was being decommissioned and would be demolished in preparation for a sale.

“Structural demolition works will commence in coming weeks with subsequent earthworks and tank removal,” the spokesperson said.

“The site will then be sold by expression of interest.”

Warrnambool resident Alan Tampion worked at the store in the late 1960s and 70s when it was a Mobil service station known by locals as “Surf City”.

“You served everybody and had your oil cans out the front. Did everything for the customer wiped their windscreens and pumped tyres up. Plus they did repairs there, there was a two bay workshop,” Mr Tampion recalled.

BACK THEN: The site was formerly a Mobil service station in the 1970s. Picture supplied: Warrnambool and District Historical Soceity

BACK THEN: The site was formerly a Mobil service station in the 1970s. Picture supplied: Warrnambool and District Historical Soceity

Mr Tampion, who is working on a history about Warrnambool’s service stations and milk bars, said the site was formerly grain seller McMeekin Produce Merchants and then a taxi depot.

It then became a Mobil service station with a succession of Warrnambool owners, before it became Caltex about five years ago.

The closure follows a new four-bowser Woolworths-Caltex service station opening in Dennington in November last year.

Caltex also closed another service station on Raglan Parade in February 2009, but a Caltex on Raglan Parade in West Warrnambool remains open.

Warrnambool resident Wes Dunn also worked at the site when it was a Mobil in the late 1970s and recalls petrol dropping as low as 39 cents a litre. 

“I worked there as a 15-year-old for six years until I was 21,” Mr Dunn said. “We had two or three people running the drive way. Now it’s one or two persons in the store behind a console in most instances.”

He said he believed the change showed a decline in smaller service stations in Warrnambool.

“I would think it’s a changing of the guard and some of the bigger service sites are now probably a whole lot more user friendly than the smaller sites.”

Extracted from The Standard