Company History

Humble beginnings

When Matthew Collins hung up his “Carrier and Contractor” sign at his Marrickville premises around one hundred years ago he undertook haulage work with a single horse and dray. It was a humble beginning that developed rapidly into an operation that involved 100 men and 130 horses and vehicles.

Historical documents, such as the History of Marrickville, show that Mr Collins and his staff were extremely proud of their horse teams, which were recognised as among the finest in the state. Today’s managing-director, his grandson Matt Collins, refers to this high standard as typical of the company in both the past and present.

It was relatively unusual at that time for a company to specialise in conveying turf soil, and garden materials, but he quickly found a market niche that ranged from supplying tennis courts, private homes, cricket grounds and Marrickville’s parks. Before long the company was a regular supplier of soil and top dressing to Royal Sydney Golf Club, White City, Sydney Cricket Ground and Randwick Racecourse. Turf was supplied to Hyde Park and the Sydney Botanic Gardens.

In the 1920s horse transport gave way to motors and Mr Collins rapidly built up a fleet of motor vehicles. The company continued to expand despite the depression. Today the company has a fleet of over 100 vehicles from road vehicles largely involved in transporting the company’s own products to earthmoving and excavating equipment. It was one of the first two transport companies to have R.T.A. accreditation in NSW.

After the war the business was incorporated and Matthew’s son John diversified the business. In response to post war reconstruction an earthmoving plant hire division was formed, bulk haulage of goods from wharves was undertaken, and an industrial waste division introduced.

The traditional Collins business, supplying quality materials to the sports turf industry, has succeeded and expanded because of the company’s careful planning to ensure secured resources are available to meet market requirements. Today the company’s strategically located bulk depots at Revesby and extractive reserves at Camden offer the industry long term security of supply.


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