Photographs by Joe Hockley
Gary is one of the team behind Roar Honey, as well as one of the new managers of the Britomart Saturday Market.
Are you from Auckland?
Yes, born in Otahuhu, raised in Papakura. I lived in the South Island for several years, in the UK for 25 years and even worked at the South Pole for a month in 1973.
What was your first job?
My first job was working with washing machinery parts, which then became an apprenticeship as a diesel mechanic.
How did you get into the honey business?
Having a passion for beekeeping and having many beekeepers around me.
What do you love about having a stall at the Britomart market?
I’ve always loved been at Britomart Market over the years. It’s been my favourite market, I love the city vibe.
What are you looking forward to in terms of the market's future over the next few months?
My great ambition is to grow the market so Britomart will become a real spot on the visitor calendar and a major point of interest to visit, and also a place for locals to want to come back to.
Can you tell us about the different types of honey you sell?
That’s a big question! But in short, the types are different because of the flowers, natural conditions and regions. We sell Clover, Multifloral, Pohutukawa, Wetland, Bush (and its many variations) and of course Manuka, with its many variations.
What's your best winter cold remedy incorporating honey?
Tea, extra-long draft of warm water, slices of lemon and or lime, a good spoonful of strong Bush Rewarewa, Manuka or Kanuka, honey. Let it draw for 10 minutes, keep it warm, take slowly.
What fact about honey surprises people the most?
The totally natural qualities – of which there are so many – because honey reflects the natural environment [that it comes from] in terms of flora and fauna, textures, colours and flavours.
What’s your idea of fun?
I do love to travel, even within New Zealand. I would love to do some of the Great Train Rides.
What’s your favourite thing to do outside work?
I like bush tramping and walking around the North Shore beaches.