Retiring after a 42 year career, postman Dick Herlihy has successfully tendered to keep the last post van he ever drove.

Sixty-five year old Dick Herlihy from Church Cross in West Cork drove the distinctive orange van 60 miles a day, for five days a week, over a six years period. With 65,750 miles on the clock, the van was decommissioned by An Post; but Dick couldn’t bear to see it go for scrap. He put in a successful tender for the van which he ultimately purchased for the bargain price of £10.

As a good will gesture, local garage Christy Crowley Limited made the van roadworthy again. Skibbereen head postman Barney O’Connor signed the van over to Dick and the proud van owner drove out of the garage to a rapturous round of applause.

However the refurbished van still bears the scars of every postman’s nemesis, the family dog.

The dogs took a fancy to me.

Dick displays the damage done by dogs to his van. He has a terrier at home but thankfully this dog’s teeth are small so he does not go around biting cars.

Dick hasn’t yet figured out what he will do with the van in retirement but

I won’t stir her without tax and insurance anyway, oh we’ll do her, we’ll keep her ourselves.

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 19 March 1987. The reporter is Tom MacSweeney.