Road Metals 60th anniversary

By: Lyndsay Whittle


Road Metals 60th anniversary Road Metals 60th anniversary
Road Metals 60th anniversary Road Metals 60th anniversary
Road Metals 60th anniversary Road Metals 60th anniversary
Road Metals 60th anniversary Road Metals 60th anniversary
Road Metals 60th anniversary Road Metals 60th anniversary
Road Metals 60th anniversary Road Metals 60th anniversary
Road Metals 60th anniversary Road Metals 60th anniversary
Road Metals 60th anniversary Road Metals 60th anniversary
Road Metals 60th anniversary Road Metals 60th anniversary
Road Metals 60th anniversary Road Metals 60th anniversary

Road Metals has just turned 60 and its managing director Murray Francis says it’ll still be going strong in 40 years (at the very least!). Check out these photos from the big celebration.

The boss should know what he’s talking about because he’s come up through the ranks in the business his father Stan Francis started in 1955 with a one-tonne truck he purchased with proceeds he earned from rabbit trapping.

Francis is a no-nonsense straight talking kind of guy who started his working life in the family business in 1970 as a truck driver and didn’t take over running the company until 1992 when Stan died suddenly at the age of 63.

At the time of Stan’s untimely death the company operated about eight trucks and a small number of loaders and associated machinery, however the business has expanded over the past 23 years to a point where its truck, trailer and machinery fleet numbers in the hundreds, including a fleet of immaculately-restored classic trucks.

Road Metals also boasts a fleet of 54 loaders which is made up of a mix of Cat and Volvo brands, all of which operate at the company’s plants throughout the South Island.

The company celebrated 50 years of being in business back in 2005 by holding a function at their Caledonian Road depot.

However with a guest-list numbering 300 for the 60th anniversary bash, the organising committee decided to hold the event at the Loan and Merc building right in the heart of Oamaru’s historic precinct.

The historic building which used to serve Oamaru as a grain store apparently lay in a disused state for many years, but recently has seen a new life as a venue for corporate events and dinners.

Tables were cleverly decorated with river stones and featured photos of Road Metals staff and vehicles, both current and from days gone by, ‘sign-posted’ into the long piles of metal.

Road Metals’ staff had spent about four hours on the day of the event bringing trucks and machinery several kilometres from the company’s depot and parking them on an adjacent park, topping-off the ambience of the evening.

Guests started arriving at 6pm for pre-dinner drinks and nibbles, along with a most interesting commentary from the MC for the evening who was none other than the boss himself.

As the MC, Francis summoned the 300 guests to move outside to where the fleet was parked so they could participate in a group photograph.

A drone was flown in to take the necessary photo, while attending media got some fairly decent shots from an adjacent overhead foot bridge.

Read the full article in issue #266 of Deals on Wheels magazine. Subscribe here.

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