East Yorkshire-based Jos Richardson and Son will mark 125 years in business with the official opening of its new service station and truck stop development at Goole on May 5.
The family-run firm owns the Glews car dealership in Goole, which is a Vauxhall, Peugeot and Isuzu franchise, and five service stations across east and north Yorkshire. In addition to the newly refurbished and extended service station and truck stop facilities off Rawcliffe Road, Goole, there is the Long’s Corner service station in nearby Howden, and service stations at Primrose Valley, Filey and Escrick.
Jos Richardson and Son has invested in excess of £4m in the redevelopment of its flagship Goole site during the last four years, which included a contribution towards the cost of installing a new roundabout and access road off the A614. The site now features an extended service station and forecourt with a Subway franchise and a three-acre truck stop that typically attracts around 65 vehicles per night.
The Glews car showroom, which shares the Rawcliffe Road site, has also been extended and updated. Extensive refurbishment schemes have also taken place at the service stations at Howden and Escrick in recent years. The company now employs around 130 people across its six sites.
Jos Richardson and Son started life as a coal delivery business in 1892 but has constantly moved with the times in order to evolve and grow under the leadership of five successive generations of the Richardson family. It was founded by Joseph Richardson, whose sons Henry and Harold joined the business during the early part of the 20th century. During the 1940s, brothers David and Michael became the third generation of the family to join the business which, by this time, was operating retail coal depots at Goole, Market Weighton, Rawcliffe and South Cave, along with a fleet of 15 coal lorries.
By the time David’s son, Tim, joined the company in 1966, it also had a credit loan arm and travel agency, although the latter was sold in the early 1970s. In 1978 the family acquired Glews Garage in Goole, which was a single workshop at that time. In 1988 the decision was taken by David and Tim to sell the coal business to the British Fuel Company, although a small coal retail operation continued for another two years. In December 1990, three generations of Richardsons (David, Tim and Tim’s son, Joseph) delivered their last bag of coal - almost 100 years after David’s grandfather, Joseph, had first launched the business. As the focus shifted from coal to cars, Glews expanded with the addition of a Vauxhall franchise, a Peugeot franchise, service workshops, an accident repair centre, a 24 -hour recovery service and a Texaco petrol forecourt.
During the late 1990s, Tim had the foresight to develop a 24-hour petrol service station with a convenience store and café. It was a move that not only heralded a change of direction for the company but also set it on course for a 25-year period of rapid expansion, thanks to the acquisition of four further service stations. In recent years, Tim’s son, Joseph, and daughter, Jane, have become the fifth generation of the Richardson family to run the business.
Managing director Joseph said: “We’ve always been the sort of company that has tried to change and keep up with trends and that has set us in good stead. We realised many years ago that it was no longer good enough for a service station just to sell petrol and a chocolate bar. These days you have to do food, coffee, groceries, parking and more; people use them as a destination and stay for longer.
“We have ambition to expand further, but it has to be the right fit for us. We’ve had numerous opportunities to acquire more sites, but we’re very strict about what we’re looking for. I think that one of the key reasons for our longevity as a company is that we’ve always been quite cautious; we reinvest the vast majority of our profits back into the company. Also, through the generations, we’ve ensured that the business remains 100 per cent owned by our family.”
Joseph added: “It’s all about creating a legacy and each generation trying to leave it in better shape than the one before. I view myself as a custodian. I don’t know if my boys will want to join the business some day, but it would be nice for them to have that option.”
Joseph and Jane run the business alongside their co-directors Karen Marshall and Graham Andrews.