Alan Walters, pictured here inside the Kingaroy exchange, has been with Telstra for 50 years.
Alan Walters, pictured here inside the Kingaroy exchange, has been with Telstra for 50 years. Tobi Loftus

Nanango man celebrates 50 years at Telstra

NANANGO man Alan Walters has celebrated his 50th work anniversary with Telstra.

"Currently I'm assigned as a field technician," Mr Walters said.

"I do a whole range of things from fixing phone faults, installing phones, ADSL issues and network-type issues like radio systems, exchange problems, transmission issues."

The 66-year-old said he dropped out of school after year 10.

"It all started when I was at school, I was looking for an avenue in life," he said.

 

"I attended an aptitude test to see if I was suitable to do a job with Postmaster-General's Department, as Telstra was known at the time.

 

"PMG at that time was in a growth phase, on the day I started training in Chermside I was one of 300 trainees starting that year."

Mr Walters said he spent the next five years in training.

"The last couple of years of training modules was on the job experience," he said.

"I worked in Brisbane as a technician in charge of building, assembling, testing and installing rural automatic exchanges.

"We went out to rural areas to install the exchanges after we built them in Moorooka.

"That continued on for about 15 years or so. Then I decided I wanted to return to this area, the power station was in full bloom, so there was growth in Telecom Australia, as it was then known by that time.

"I worked here as an exchange network technician until the crossbar exchange system outlived its usefulness."

Mr Walters then moved into customer service work, fixing people's home connections.

He said the type of work he did was what kept him with the company for so long.

"Unlike a process worker working in a factory moving things all day, there is constant change in the technology," he said.

"I'm constantly learning new things, the variety has kept my interest." He said he had no plans to retire.

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