CUPPER, Gordon

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Inducted into the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame at ReUnion 2010.

Cuppers Transport is based in the township of Merbein in a large horticultural, dried fruit and wine region. Cuppers Transport provides services in transport and warehousing of dry and frozen goods. The current depot was first established in 1962 by Mr. Gordon Cupper.

Originally the business started because there was a need for a reliable transport service due to numerous rail strikes which increased demand for road transport. The haulage business started with one truck, a Ford ex-army Blitz being replaced with a new Austin in 1949 which he operated for four months before acquiring two new white WC series 22 prime-movers with diesel engines. By 1951 Gordon had acquired six trucks. In these early days they ran one dedicated truck driver to each truck running Merbein to Melbourne expanding to cover Adelaide, Sydney, Brisbane and numerous small towns. The first transport depot was 80 feet x 40 feet, growing to a size of 30.5 metres to 45.7 metres with a covered loading area and a freezer storage building for frozen goods.

Gordon pioneered the use, in Merbein, of the first semi-trailer. This lead to the establishment of the first semi-trailer haulage service from Merbein to Melbourne. The business continued to grow with good cartage contracts including transporting of beer and supplies to Broken Hill and Wentworth. In 1960 Gordon set up a depot in Melbourne to receive material and products for delivery to Merbein and Sunraysia with Merbein produce being delivered to Melbourne and  the markets helping the local farming districts to grow and prosper. In the late 1970s Gordon set up a new freight forwarding transport operation handling bottled wine and orange juice cartage for the local wineries and fruit processors with frozen product storage. This continues today with the support of John Nicholls.