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Old soldier, 89, finds work after placing job ad in local newspaper

An elderly former soldier has been inundated with job offers after placing an advertisement in his local newspaper urging potential employers to save him from “dying of boredom”.

Joe Bartley, 89, placed the advert in the Torquay Herald Express in the hope of finding employment, offering his services as a cleaner, DIY man and gardener.

Herald Express reporter Rom Preston-Ellis followed up the ad and conducted a video interview with Mr Bartley about his reasons for placing it, with the pensioner responding he was “fed up” of being stuck at home with nothing to do.

His story, which featured on the front of yesterday’s edition of the Herald Express, has now made national headlines.


Mr Bartley, who served in the armed forces in two spells between the 1940s and 1960s, lost his wife Cassie two years ago.

His initial advert in the Herald Express reads: “20hrs+ per week. Still able to clean, light gardening, DIY and anything.

“I have references. Old soldier, airborne services. Save me from dying of boredom!”

Mr Bartley has since been offered a job at a cafe and bar, as well as seasonal work at a local branch of Tesco.

Editor Jim Parker told HTFP: “Joe’s story is a great example of an off-beat human interest story which newspapers like the Herald Express are still very much all about. The story has also gone really well on line to show how print and web can work together.

“It also demonstrates the power of advertising as Joe has been inundated with offers of work. Good luck to him.”