Mr Raja Beenie – My Time with Gatwick Cars

Mr Beenie came to the UK in 1967 from Gujar Khan, Pakistan. He started working for Gatwick Cars in 1979 and retired in 2017.

Q. What other ethnic groups were at Gatwick?
When I started working there were mostly English drivers, one Moroccan guy, a few Pakistanis and Indian. In the 1990s this changed to 60% English drivers and 40% Pakistani drivers.

Q. What was it like working there?
Fantastic. I enjoyed every minute of it. The people I worked with, the passengers from all around the world and being able to go drive to different parts of the country.

Q. Do you still have your badge?
No, unfortunately I don’t. When I first started, there was no badge, just a token with number that we used to hang on our necks.

Q. Do you think your hard work and your job gave your children the opportunity to go into education and into different fields?
Yes I do. I have one son in his 40s and two adopted children.

Q. What moments do you still remember?
I have so many stories to tell, we had such good times. I remember one of my friends dropped passengers off. After the long journey the passengers left their baby in the car. My colleague didn’t realise until half way back that there was a baby in the car.
I picked up a passenger once and then went to the petrol station to get petrol. When I went inside to pay, the passenger went to the bathroom (he didn’t tell me). When returning to the car, I thought the passenger was still in the car. I only realised he wasn’t when I got to my destination – so I drove all the way back to pick him up.

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