LIVERPOOL – People have been pulling into Whynot Services Ltd. on White Point Road to fill their gas tanks for about 60 years.
“This place has employed three-quarters of Queens County,” said Stephen Whynot. “If you don’t know somebody that has worked here, then you’re not from Liverpool.”
Stephen’s grandfather, Earle Whynot, bought the land initially. When it was ready, he built the service station, and at that time, the name on the front of the building was White Rose. Later, the building became a Shell service station.
Over the years, faces and names aren’t the only things that have changed - the landscape is not the same as it once was. There was once a plumbing shop and laundromat, among other things, said Earle’s granddaughter, Michelle Colp.
“Gramp had an oil business, so we don’t have that,” she added.
Although Earle started the business, the backbone was his wife, Edith.
“She was the one that was here and opened everyday. He was the one that came at 11 and went in the oil truck,” said Colp, chuckling.
After Earle died, Stephen and Colp’s father, Gaven Whynot, took over in 1990. Gaven died in the summer of 2016, but the business remained in the family. Stephen and his wife Sheila have been running the gas station and store for about 15 years.
“I’ve always been around here regardless,” said Stephen.
Presently, Whynot Services Ltd. has full-service mechanic’s bays, tire repair and sales, U-Haul rentals, rust check undercoating, car detailing, and full-service gas.
The guy who spends a lot of time in the bay is Devin Mansfield, who’s worked at Whynot’s for 28 years.
Part of the community
“We’re really proud,” said Colp, Stephen and Sheila about being such a longtime business in Queens County.
Of course, there have been ups and downs and times that were more stressful than others. There are daily struggles, they admit, but the doors are still open. And often, familiar customers are the ones walking through those doors, said Sheila.
“We enjoy them coming here, and we are very thankful that they help support our business,” said Sheila.
Stephen and Colp grew up at the service station. Colp would work in the office with Edith, sometimes helping to roll change. Stephen recalls helping to deal with radiators and cleaning cars.
Colp and Stephen would help Earle lock the station at the end of the night. When Earle was eventually moved to a home, the grandchildren helped Edith.
Stephen and Colp were children when they moved from Halifax to Liverpool, but before that, they would spend weekends in Liverpool.
“We were always here,” said Colp.
“I still remember putting nickels on the railroad track for the train to run over and flatten,” recalled Stephen.
Colp, Stephen and Sheila say they’re thankful for all the customers who have contributed to Whynot’s being open all these years.
“Without customers, there’s no business,” said Stephen. “It takes a community to have a business.”