VTP evolved from Clive Richardson’s father’s company who were a direct player in the road transport industry. Here’s a glimpse into how one transport company turned into another without simply fading away as many family-owned businesses do.
From Farmer to Transporter
The late Henry Mattison Richardson started out as a farmer about halfway between Slingsby and Kirkbymoorside. In the 40s and 50s, Yorkshire was primarily a farming community, and agricultural contractors were in high demand. In order to deal with the seasonal nature of agriculture, Henry invested in the necessary tractors for harvest time but also got into dealing straw and the purchasing and selling of livestock.
Cattle-dealing was basically the start of the transport business with the company bringing livestock as far as Northumberland. He started with an ‘O’ Series Bedford that he purchased second-hand. HM Richardson quickly realized that when the float-body was demounted, the truck could instead be used for things like hauling timber. As a result, what started as livestock trade turned more and more into general transport, and Henry intentionally purchased his vehicles to be easily adaptable for multi-purpose transportation.
HM Richardson Moves to Slingsby
At this point, it became necessary to set up a larger headquarters in a central hub. This happened in Slingsby in 1963. Henry took advantage of emerging technology to strike ahead in the business. For example, in a time when most trucks still only had four wheels, Henry invested in a few 8-wheelers for hauling tons of feed. While some of his three 8-wheelers lasted longer than others, they certainly caused some shock and awe when a delivery arrived on a type of vehicle no one had seen before.