Garner Group Holdings has celebrated 50 years as an independent Jet dealer.

Maurice Garner signed his first supply contract with Jet in 1961, following the opening of his first service station near Portsmouth, and five decades later, the Garner Group operates three Jet forecourts in the region - Woolmer, Green Road and Portsbridge.

The business is now run by Maurice’s two sons, Mike and Tim, and co-director Dave Auger, and Mike said: “We are delighted to reach such a milestone with Jet.

“When my father entered into partnership with the brand 50 years ago, fuel retailing was very different. The early deals he made were based on a gentleman’s agreement. Contracts were written on the back of a beer mat and sealed with a handshake.”

To celebrate the 50-year milestone, Pete George, Phillips 66 manager, UK and Ireland marketing, joined manager, regional sales, Guy Pulham and territory manager Paul Carey on the forecourt of the Woolmer Service Station in Borden to toast the long-standing relationship with the three Garner Group directors.

“In today’s fast changing sector, there are few brands that will have dealers that have been customers for 50 years,” said George. “We are known for the close relationships we have with our dealers and are proud to say that this approach has not changed, from the day Maurice Garner first became one of our dealers to our operations as Phillips 66 today.”

The Garner Group has bought, redeveloped and sold a number of sites, operating a total of eight Jet forecourts across the last five decades, and later this year, Portsbridge Service Station – the second Jet site opened by Maurice Garner in 1967 – will be fully redeveloped.