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).

Riding's Employees

A growing selection of photographs showing various employees who worked for W & J Riding over the years.

Tom Riding was always proud of the fact that many of his staff were long serving, especially some of the drivers who worked for the company most of their working life.

Should you see any names missing in any of the pictures below, and you can help, or have any former employee picture you would like to add please get in touch at the bottom of the page via the ‘Get In Touch’ or Facebook link.

Tom Riding takes time out for a photograph with long time serving driver the late Bill Coolican (centre) who drove for the company for over 40 years.

The photograph was taken during a publicity photo shoot for ICI and Seddon Atkinson at the ICI Rocksavage works at Runcorn in 1984.

The gentleman on the left was, i believe, a representative from Seddon Atkinson Vehicles.

A couple of Riding’s early drivers were, left Tommy Elliot and on the right Bob Swanson.

They are pictured standing along side Leyland Buffalo TQ 1 Reg No TF 9918 was registered new in September 1932 and was in the fleet for sixteen years right up to nationalisation which took place in 1948. 

Seen here working on a Leyland Octopus are the late Harold Bristo and the late Frank Archer.

Harold is stood on the steps and apart from a short time away from the company worked for W & J Riding all his life.

He was originally a driver for many years but later went onto permanent nights in the garage servicing and changing oil etc.

Frank, stood on the right hand side, was a fitter who had also been with the company for what seemed like an eternity and worked nights for many many years.

A young David Ball seen here in the depot cleaning up 33 gallon Leyland fuel tank which had been removed and replaced by an AEC 50 gallon tank.

Back in the day Riding’s fitted the larger AEC fuel tanks to most of their early Leylands which replaced the original smaller Leyland 33 gallon fuel tank that came as standard at the time.

Seen here in Riding’s South Bank depot on Teesside is driver Jimmy Ashcroft next to Albion Super Clydesdale four wheeler Reg No UTE 340H Fleet No 40 (Chassis No 57513D) which was purchased new from local Albion agents Gilbraiths of Chorley on the 29th of August 1969 at a cost of £2,854 

Driver Dick Walton takes time out for a photograph having just discharged 20 tons of Corvic at Osma Plastics at Ashford in Kent which had been loaded at the ICI Ltd Hillhouse Works at Thornton in Lancashire.

Long time serving Riding’s driver the late Jack Moon is pictured here in October 1969 at the age of 33 alongside his brand new Atkinson Mk 2 tractor unit 

On Tuesday the 14th of November 2017 Jack sadly passed away at the age of 81 after a long battle with cancer.

Pictured here in 1969 is long time serving driver Anthony Freeman while parked on the M6 Charnock Richard service area in Lancashire loaded with 22 tons of copper sulfate loaded at Widnes and destined for ICI at Wilton.

The late Freddie Wolstenholme, aka Pluto, takes time out for a picture with Tom Riding’s eldest daughter Elizabeth in front of Atkinson Mk 2 4×2 tractor unit Reg No ETF 510J Fleet No 77 ‘Active’ one Sunday morning in 1970 during a delivery to Padiham near Burnley.

Sadly Freddie Wolstenholme was tragically killed in a road traffic accident in Stevenage four years later on the 2nd of December 1974.

The late John Whalley who was an apprentice mechanic at Riding’s for three years. 

The late Albert Brown aka ‘Big Albert’ sat in the cab of Seddon Atkinson 400 Series 4×2 tractor unit Reg No VRM 444S Fleet No1 ‘Auld Reekie’

Big Albert lived in Accrington and drove for Riding’s for 28 years but in later years sadly suffered a stroke while driving Seddon Atkinson Reg No A360 KFR over Blubberhouse, resulting in it running off the road.

Unfortunately Albert never recovered enough to return to work and died shortly after.

The late Eddie Dixon who drove Seddon Atkinson 400 Series 4×2 tractor unit Reg No TUN 111T Fleet No 19 ‘Flying Dutchman’, on the Solrec contract, note the pull chain for the air horn on the roof. 

Eddie worked at Riding’s for many years along with his son Alan who is pictured below.

Long serving driver Alan Dixon in his Atkinson Borderer in the 1970’s who later went on to work in the traffic office.

Long time serving driver Joe Wilson who worked twice at Riding’s seen in the cab of Seddon Atkinson 400 Series 4×2 tractor unit Reg No OCK 460T Fleet No 59 ‘Shooting Star’ which he drove from new.

Pictured here at the wheel of Seddon Atkinson 401 Reg No A350 PCW ‘Jubilant’ is driver Fred Squires. 

Fred was the driver who delivered Blackpool’s prototype Centenary tram in April 1984 which can be found in Tram Delivery 

March 1985 and driver Thurston Greenhall is pictured in the cab of his day-cabbed Seddon Atkinson 401 4×2 tractor unit Reg No B520 VCK Fleet No 85 ‘Caledonian’ which was fitted with a Gardner 8LXCT 300 engine in line with a Fuller 11609 gearbox.

He is about to depart on night trunk to Motherwell depot with 20 tons of Heinz Beans on board and returning to Longridge with a load of steel coils, which was a round trip of 360 miles.

At the time the picture was taken in 1985 Thurston was aged 56 and had been driving for Ridings for 22 years. since he joined they company back in 1963.

The late John Kellett having a chat on the CB while at the wheel of his 400 Series Seddon Atkinson.

Drivers the late Bill Proctor (left) who sadly passed away in August 2021,  and the late Rex Rich (right), who sadly passed away in September 2018, are pictured here larking about in the cab of an Atkinson Borderer in the days when some drivers had CBs in their cabs.

Another shot of the late Rex Rich chatting on the old CB which was a great asset back in the day when running together before the advent of mobile phones. 

Driver the late Jim Lomas at the wheel Seddon Atkinson Reg No COL 628V.  

Jim left and went to Pandora for a period but later came back to Riding’s and also ran his his own lorry for a time.

Jim unfortunately passed away in his early sixties.

Seen here in 1979 from left to right are Riding drivers Ken Fell, Jim Lomas and Ian Smith.
At the time they were hauling steel plate from Motherwell to ship builders in Stockton on Tees but due to a serious accident the A66 was closed for over three hours resulting in a long queue of lorries which were unable to turn around on the narrow road.
Driver Alan Dixon, who was also in the queue, took the photograph while they were waiting for the road to reopen, 

Driver the late David Ireland aka ‘Slack’ at the wheel of his allocated motor Seddon Atkinson 400 Series 4×2 tractor unit Reg No WCW 700V Fleet No 55 ‘Rising Star’ .

Long serving driver the late Harry Dinsdale at the wheel.

Harry retired in 1984 as can be seen in the picture below.

Driver the late Harry Dinsdale (left) who spent all his working life at Riding’s is pictured here in 1984 receiving his retirement gift from Trevor Scammell (centre) and Albert Hammond, aka Scotty, on the right.

Harry sadly passed away on the 30th of November 2015.

Taken one evening in 1986 at W & J Ridings Motherwell (Carfin) depot Scotland from left to right are drivers, Bill Proctor, Ian Noblet (who drove for Tony Lee on contract to Riding) and Alan Bretherton.
They are standing in front of Seddon Atkinson 400 Series 4×2 tractor unit Reg No ORH 90W Fleet No 12 ‘Tornado’ which was Bill Proctor’s regular motor.

Driver Jimmy McColl is a picture of concentration as he attempts to get the right amount of product and air flow into the discharge line during the delivery of ICI pvc paste grade at Nairn’s of Kirkcaldy.

One of Riding’s long serving drivers Jack Swanson takes time out for a photograph in front of ERF E10 4×2 tractor unit Reg No F560 ACK Fleet No 106 ‘Scafell Pike’ which was assigned to the Verbrugge Contract. 

Driver Alan Margerison is pictured here in Longridge while fuelling up Seddon Atkinson 4-11 4×2 tractor unit Reg No E80 HFV Fleet No 99 ‘Hercules’ which was powered by a Gardner 6LXDT engine.

Driver Joe Gannon, who lived in Burnley, is pictured along side his regular motor Seddon Atkinson Strato 4×2 tractor unit Reg No F828 GNA Fleet No 112 ‘Defiant’ which was powered by a Cummins L10 325 engine. 

Another picture of night trunk driver Thurston Greenall this time taken in 1993 pictured next to Seddon Atkinson Strato 4×2 tractor unit Reg No G750 UEC Fleet No 7 ‘Indomitable’ which was was powered by a. Perkins TX engine.

Seddon Atkinson Strato 4×2 tractor unit Reg No H840 VFR Fleet No 1 ‘Precursor’ on the first day in service on the 19th of August 1990 with driver Mick McKay, aged 37 at the time, about to leave the depot destined for Nairn’s of Kirkcaldy.  

Another shot of Mick McKay, while on the right is long serving Riding’s driver Alan Hyde.

Standing in front of ‘E’ Series ERF 4×2 tractor unit Reg No G770 HHG Fleet No 3 ‘Snowdon’ is driver Ken Moon whose brother the late Jack Moon, pictured below, was also a long time serving Riding’s driver.

A couple of long serving Riding drivers who are sadly no longer with us take time out for a photograph.

On the left is the late Vic Mason while on the right the late Jack Moon whose brother Ken Moon was also a driver at Riding’s.

The late John Fawcett, aka Cumberland John, is pictured here taking time out for a photograph in 1995 next to his allocated motor, Seddon Atkinson 4-11 4×2 tractor unit Reg No E470 NFV Fleet No 18 ‘Apollo.

John drove for W & J Riding for many years and was one of the old school of the haulage industry and a true legend but after a long illness he sadly passed away at his home on the 18th of January 2022. 

Long serving driver Fred Bretherton is seen here in 1995 alongside ‘E’ Series ERF 4×2 tractor unit Reg No K730 URN Fleet No 6 ‘Sir Lancelot’ which was registered new on the 1st of February 1993,

Driver Dave Edward is pictured here in 1995 alongside ERF EC12 4X2 tractor unit Reg No L390 KHG Fleet No 58 ‘Resolute’ which was powered by a Perkins E12 TX325 engine.

Driver Mick Davies is pictured here in September 1995 next to brand new ERF EC12 Series 4×2 tractor unit Reg No N340 ERN Fleet No 19 ‘Flying Dutchman’ which was registered new on the 1st of September 1995 only a month before the retirement of Tom Riding.

Based at Thornaby depot Jean Claude Newman is seen here in the cab of Foden Reg No M870 RRN Fleet No12 ‘Great Central’ which was purchased new from Foden agents Manchester Truck Centre on Duncan Street Salford on the 25th of August 1994 at a cost of £39,750 plus vat.

Another picture taken in Thornaby depot with drivers Jean Claud Newman on the left and Mick Richardson on the right.

Motherwell Depot drivers meeting with among others Archie Ryan, Billy McCann, Tam Brady and Sonny O,Rourke.

Drivers Dave Fletcher left and Ronnie ‘Riding’ Williams right take time out for photograph in Longridge depot in 1995.

Seen by Mick Mckay at 10:00

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Thanks Mick Here’s one have just scanned think it’s 1981 due to Patersons road train in the picture

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Driver Sonny O’ Rourke who drove Riding’s one and only M.A.N. 15.170 four wheeler box van Reg No E50 UNA Fleet No 98 ‘Western Isle’.

Sonny was out based at the Timax distribution depot at Falkirk on the Timax Bainbridge exhaust contract delivering exhaust systems to retailers across Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Longridge depot garage day crew in 1995..

From left to right Ian Tyson, Tony Stevens, Mick Brewer, Matt Lee, Simon Crook, Paul Brunton, Neil Howarth, Dave Porter, Stuart Ainsworth and Tony Williams.

Vehicle mechanic Paul Brunton takes time out for a photograph while waiting for defects in the garage at Longridge.

A young Ian Tyson gets to grips with an engine while at work in the garage at Longridge depot. 

Seen here in the garage at Longridge in 1995 are mechanic Matt Lee and garage foreman Stuart Ainsworth.

Another Longridge garage shot showing Neil Howarth on the left with Tony Stevens on the right.

Pictured here in the garage Simon Crook is standing on the left with Tony Williams on the right.

A young Mick Brewer worked in the garage alongside his father Mick Brewer, taking over from him when he retired.

Motherwell depot and Bobby McIntyre, Howie Elder along with John Elliot depot manager, with his Alsation, take time out for a photograph.

Bobby McIntyre and Howie Elder were self employed mechanics who used Motherwell depot to do all of W & J Riding’s repairs and recovery as and when required while the late ‘Big’ John Elliot was a fantastic worker who used to turn the vehicles around in double quick time and was very highly regarded by Tom Riding.
From left to right Norman Brewer Antony Freeman and David Thomas take time out for a photograph in 1995.
Anthony Freeman, centre,worked for Riding’s for 39 years both as a driver and later as yard foreman.

W & J Ridings behind the scenes office staff line up for a photograph outside the long gone offices on Whittingham Road in 1995.