When you drive around Adelaide’s northern suburbs one brand of vehicle is seen more than any other – the Holden. The much-loved badge will today cease production in Australia when Holden’s Elizabeth plant closes its doors.
One person responsible for more than 10 Holdens, including classic models like the Torana, on northern roads is StPatsTech Old Scholar Dale Williams, 23.
St Patrick’s Technical College has reflected on its association with the company and its impact on the northern region.
Dale, who lives at Two Wells, did his apprenticeship at Holden after graduating from StPatsTech’s electrotechnology program. He began his electrical apprenticeship in 2012 but left as soon as he completed his training.
“I was about half way through my electrical apprenticeship when they said they were closing. So all of us apprentices kind of knew the writing was on the wall in terms of us not having a job. There were 10 apprentices at the time and we all knew there would be no job after and as soon as were signed off we were out the door.”
“I left Holden on January 30, 2016 and I was able to get another job within a month. I now work in the lift industry and it’s something completely different.’’
Dale said after the announcement of the closure the mood at the factory changed. He said it was sad to see colleagues and friends made redundant over the past several years.
Dale is pictured with his dad Chris during one of Holden’s farewell events. Dale was able to put his first car, a 1976 Holden LX Torana with a V8 355 Stroker motor on the assembly line. Dale has a collection of more than 10 Holdens which he has restored.