Inducted into the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame at ReUnion 2014.
Robert (Bob) Hunt born in Bendigo in 1938 just at the onset of WW2. He attended school at Fosterville and later the Bendigo technical college. Bob’s first foray into the trucking industry was when, as a 19 year old, he started carting firewood to Melbourne in 1957. His truck was a Bedford fitted with a Hansa Lloyd diesel engine. He back loaded with fertilizer and supplies for local firms.
After the Bedford caught fire and was unfortunately a ‘write off’ Bob purchased a five ton Austin and continued carting firewood to Melbourne wood yards. He also carted fowl manure to the markets gardens in the outer Melbourne area. The Austin often needed roadside repairs including the need to replace a clutch and attend to general engine maintenance on the run. In later years Bob operated a 7 ton petrol powered Commer to cart clay from the clay pits at Axedale to brickworks all around Victoria and pottery works in Adelaide. He also purchased a TS3 Commer ‘knocker’ with a 12 ton semi tipper. The knocker, produced by the Rootes group, operated with horizontally opposed pistons and was a very popular truck in Australia.
By 1964 Bob had married Margret and they bought a brand new Perkins powered Commer. With Esanda finance it cost them 60 pounds a month. They put it to work carting clay and gravel. Within a few years they had another Perkins powered Commer rigid was running to Adelaide and Brisbane from Melbourne with cubic freight. In 1978 a 1418 Mercedes Benz joined the fleet to pull a semi-trailer carting hay, tomato’s and general freight. Later they pulled a pan from Ipec for a while before returning to tippers carting garden supplies in and around the Bendigo area up until 2007. This gave Bob 50 years in the trucking business. He’d come a long way since the Bedford with a Hansa-Lloyd diesel engine.
Bob Hunt has left his mark on the industry. His twin sons Justin and Darren as well as two grandsons John and Jacob work in the trucking business. These days Bob is content tinkering with his tractor and is undertaking a Commer knocker restoration.