Thank You!

A special thank you to the late Thomas William Riding, former managing director and chief executive of W & J Riding for 25 years, to whom this website is dedicated.

Over the years Tom was kind enough to supply a vast amount of detailed historical information along with many of the superb rare photographs featured and without his invaluable help and dedication this website would not have been possible.

The site now contains over 2500 images, complete with in depth details, all of which are accessible via the main menu & side menu (marked with the mobile menu icon of 3 lines on a mobile & tablet).

End of an Era.

This section of the website documents the end of an era with the demolition of W & J Riding’s old depot in 2017 which was located on Whittingham Road Longridge.

Today the depot is long gone and has been replaced with a new housing estate, aptly named ‘The Riding’s’, along with an Aldi supermarket which opened for business in November 2018.

Inside the ‘rip and tip’ shed at Riding’s old depot showing one of the last Van Benton tankers to be loaded at the soon to be demolished Longridge depot.

Pallets were lifted onto the gantry and individual sacks were dropped onto the conveyor belt which were then slit open allowing the powder to fall into the tank below. 

Riding’s started this particular operation back in 1983 at the request of ICI Ltd and it continued until the final day of operations on the 28th October 2016. 

During that period of 30 years in which time they did five loads a day there was never a single complaint.

It was also possible to discharge 1 tonne bags or containers using an auger and the equipment on the left of the picture.

The end of ‘rip and tip’ operations at Longridge as the very last bag of plastic powder is dispensed into the tanker below on the 28th of October 2016.

ERF EC11 6X2 tractor unit Reg No S153 RNB, which was new in August 1998, stands in the deserted yard at Longridge after performing it’s final shunting duties and awaits it’s fate on the day the depot closed down on Wednesday the 26th of October 2016..

Fortunately it was saved for preservation so may appear on the road again sometime in the near future..

4pm Wednesday the 26th of October 2016 and the final tanker payload of plastic powder pulls out of the depot at Longridge in a Van Benton tri-axle tanker.

10.30am on the 26th of October 2016 and with the equipment stripped out of the rip and tear building Turners ERF prepares to leave Longridge depot with the final load of machinery before demolition began six months later in April 2017.

A rather sad looking view of the decommissioned fuel pumps as they await being ripped out of the ground and sent for scrap during the demolition of Longridge depot in 2017. 

There was also another pump on either side of the entry so it was possible to fill up four vehicles at the same time. 

If the drivers left the vehicle straight it was also possible to  accommodate four more behind the ones fueling up, thus taking eight lorries off the adjacent main road. 

Originally these pumps were made in house and each one was capable of dispensing 18 gallons per minute. 

The original Daniel Platt Garage and Riding’s offices on Whittingham Road Longridge are seen here shortly before demolition began at the end of April 2017.

The 24th of May 2017 and the late Tom Riding took a last look at what remained of the garage before it was demolished later in the day.

The photograph was taken by the late Tom Riding, as were all the pictures below, as he documented the demolition of his old companies depot during the months of May and June in 2017.

The 24th of May 2017 and the old garage and service bays are all but gone as demolition gets well under way in preparation for the new Aldi store and housing development that now stands on the site today. 

26th of May 2017 and the demolition begins of W & J Riding’s old office block on Whittingham Road Longridge.

30th of May 2017 and the old depot buildings are being reduced to rubble

As the demolition continues on the 30th of May 2017 it is does not take long before the garage and office block are torn down.

3.15pm on the 30th of May 2017 and the demolition of W & J Riding’s old office block is nearly complete as the heavy machinery tears the building apart.

The 2nd of June 2017 with the offices and garage now gone the whole site almost leveled in preparation for the new houses and Aldi supermarket which would open some 17 months later..

The 5th of June 2017 and this picture was taken at 1.30 in the afternoon as continues in demolishing the final section of Longridge depot, the warehouse and ‘rip and tip’ shed.

The 21st of June 2017 and the remains of the rest of the buildings have gone with the site now leveled. 

17 months later, after this picture was taken, a new Aldi store opened on the site.

The scene in February 2019 with the depot now long gone the site now contains an Aldi supermarket which opened in November 2018 along with a new housing development.

The road names on the development all have an historic link to W & J Riding customers, Ravenscraig Road after the British Steel Corporation plant in Scotland, Hillhouse Road after the ICI works at Hillhouse Thornton,  Bainbridge Road after the exhaust company with the same name at Squires Gate Blackpool and an engine manufacturer Cummins Drive. 

Jim Riding’s brother in law the late Walter Carefoots yard still remains in Longridge and can still be seen just to the right of Aldi.