Roger and Merren Gregg have been owners of the Yass Newsagency for the past 17 years and they have handed over the reins to a new owner this week.
More than two decades ago the couple lived in Cooma where they taught high school students around the state as well as owned a grazing property in the area.
Deciding on a change of scenery and wanting to venture into retail, the school teachers set their sight on Yass when they purchased the newsagency in the early 2000s and sold the grazing property to make the move.
For most of the past decade, the Greggs had to adapt to many changes in the retail market and this included selling of mobile phones and toys.
Over time print product slowed down and just eight weeks ago home delivery of newspaper ceased. The Yass Valley Times has taken over distribution of its own paper to local sub-agents.
In its heyday, newspapers used to get delivered out on the street of the shop at 4.30 am in the morning.
The Greggs would pick it up and lay them out the front of the shop upon opening the doors and working days used to last till 6 pm.
Today, newspaper delivery is stored in a locked backroom and doors open 7.30 am to 5 pm during weekdays and weekends are just half days.
After a decade of working the Greggs finally took a holiday, this was to China for five days.
Upon reflecting on almost two decades at the retail outlet on 110 Comur Street, Merren said Roger and herself are blessed by great staff and community members.
“We have been very fortunate in our stable and local workforce. Every single one that I have worked with in the shop I have considered a friend and they have been wonderful colleagues,” she said.
“I’ll miss the banter I have with all the customers in the morning. They’re all cheerful and they make your day easier because they’re such good loyal customers.”
Cheryl Davy has worked at the newsagency for over 30 years and she knows the outlet best as a family unit.
“The Greggs have been fantastic bosses and they’ve become really close friends to me. They are amazing to work for as they very much give and take,” she said.
“They are going to be greatly missed by us and the customers. They always greet customers by their first name.”
Roger and Merren have worked with 23 staff members over the years and currently have six on board.
The Greggs will be moving back to Cooma for a short period of time but said there’s no slowing down from here on.
“We’re no longer spring chickens but we won’t retire for very long. We’ll look for something else,” Merren said.
The Yass Valley Times continues to be sold at the Newsagency and we welcome the new owners. Under new ownership, current staff are staying on as well as a few new juniors to join the ranks.