John Baines has had a long and varied career dating back to 1947 when he purchased and rebuilt his first truck, an ex-army Blitz, for use as a timber jinker. In the 65 years since John has been involved in just about every aspect of the road transport industry including wheat cartage, sand and blue metal haulage, kiln dried sand haulage, car-carrying and concrete agitators and pumps. John has also owned and operated loaders, backhoes, concrete and concrete masonry manufacturing plants.
During the late 1950s through to the 1970s John operated and maintained six bulk haulage vehicles and his front-end loaders and backhoes from a shed behind his home in Thirroul. In 1978 he purchased a larger tract of land at Woonona, built a large workshop and built the first of his three concrete plants.
John's vehicles have always been well presented and impeccably maintained. His trucks are a reflection of his deep transport roots. Today the fleet consists of 20 trucks made up mainly of Kenworth, International, Iveco, Daihatsu and Mitsubishi - all of which he has found to be reliable and good to repair and service.
At the age of 82, John is still actively involved in his businesses, Baines Transport Pty Ltd and Baines Masonry Blocks Pty Ltd. he also holds a majority interest in Masonry and Slate Pty Ltd. As managing director he is involved in all major decision making. John's three children and his grandson hold management roles within the company and John is happy with the prospect that his businesses will carry on through the next generation.
He sees the major challenge to be overcoming very low profit margins on both concrete and transport and believes the old values placed on quality of service and relationships between supplier and customer have been replaced by a focus on low cost cartage.
John is very highly regarded in the industry along the south coast.