Roadcraft celebrates 100 years - UPDATED

Merseyside, UK based crane company Roadcraft Crane Hire has celebrated its 100th anniversary.

Founded in 1920 by Henry J Carey, the company originally manufactured electric cargo trucks used on the Mersey docks. Located on Knowsley Road, Bootle, the company quickly expanded its operations and in 1933 moved a mile down the road into its current premises on Strand Road.
Roadcraft cranes were in high demand on the Mersey docks

The outbreak of World War II resulted in the majority of its workforce enlisting into army however and the company was forced to close the manufacturing side of the business. It was at this time that it started concentrating on its rental fleet and shortly after the war ended in 1945, its extended its fleet to include forklifts and small mobile cranes which were in high demand.

In 1966 company founder Carey passed away with Clarence H Moors, who had been a director of Roadcraft since 1955, taking charge. When Moors passed away in 1969, company secretary Andrew G Thomas became chairman and has held the position ever since.
The company moved into its current premises in 1933

Today, Roadcraft is run by Moors’ son, Paul Moors, who joined the company in 1955 as an apprentice fitter/mechanic. He worked his way up through the business to become a director in 1971 and eventually managing director of the company. Roadcraft currently runs a fleet of All Terrain cranes with capacities ranging from 10 to 130 tonnes as well as a number of Kato city cranes and a 15 tonne Franna pick & carry crane.
Roadcraft mostly runs a fleet of All Terrain cranes as well as a number of Kato city cranes

Managing director Paul Moors, said: “Roadcraft’s long history is a testament, not to the cranes in our fleet, but to our operators in the cab together with the dedication of all our office and support staff. The company remains committed to supplying mobile cranes to the ship repair and freight industry, together with all aspects of the construction industry. ”

Finance director Mike Caine, added: “Unfortunately, due to the current horrendous situation that we are all going through with regard to Covid-19, any thoughts of celebratory events to mark our 100 years in business have taken a “back seat” somewhat. But as far as I am able to ascertain Roadcraft is the oldest crane hire company still operating in the United Kingdom and, hopefully, will be here for many decades to come.”

Take the crane quiz

Roadcraft has carried out - and importantly photographed - a number of interesting applications over its 100 year history, so we thought we would put you to the test to see if any of our crane operators can name the make and capacity of the below cranes.

We have numbered them 1 to 10, so feel free to post your guesses in the comment section and we will reveal the answers Monday afternoon.


We have now updated the picture captions with the make and tonnage of the cranes.
A three tonne Hyster carrier crane

A five tonne Coles lattice boom crane

A 25 tonne Coles lattice boom crane

A 25 tonne Lorain crane

A 45 tonne Coles telescopic crane

A 55 tonne Coles Gargantua

A 45 tonne Coles All Terrain crane

Two 30 tonne Groves carrying out a tandem lift

A 90 tonne Krupp All Terrain crane

A 70 tonne Tadano ATF 70 G-4


Hi Pall and staff, I was with you Paul in 1965 bur still put your link up to see whats happened,I am in New Zealand here, well done with growth of the company

Oct 12, 2020

vertikal editor
Hello Stewart - we have heard back from Roadcraft and can confirm that image of the crane working on the Mersey Docks is in fact a Jones KL 22

May 28, 2020

emailed comment
Roadcraft Crane Quiz Photo number one in Mersey Docks I am sure is a Jones KL 22 Regards Stewart Moss

May 23, 2020

Enjoyed the history so much. I will try to print the photos to insert in my copy Of Denis Ashworth’s book “Going Up in the World”.

May 22, 2020

Many congratulations to you Paul and all the Roadcraft team, fantastic achievement

May 19, 2020

Jim Hagan
I think the reason for all the thumbs down is because you used joined-up writing thereby causing them great confusion as they could not decipher same. Don't take it to heart they may grow up someday to become proper human beings.

May 18, 2020

Jim Hagan
No 2 is a Coles 10/50 (Capacity/Jib length also available in 6/40 configuration) Coles hydra truck, this one was known as a 'floater' due to having no outriggers, and was made to sing by operator Ronnie Povey, who was in great demand by Pierhead Precast to fit floor beams making the fitting crews top bonuses for the speed of erection - Happy Times.

May 18, 2020

Jim Hagan
Spent some happy years there in the 70s when Les Richards was MD - succeeded by Peter Wilson whilst Paul Moors was learning the business.It was a wonderful company then and I have no doubt still is under Paul and Andrew, who was from the accountancy practice Moors Andrew Thomas, and visited regularly in the course of his duties. Only left to go to the Middle East with Sparrows - who were the only company to come near to them with regard to their reputation.
Long may they continue to be part of the heritage of Liverpool.

May 18, 2020

Can someone explain to me why my innocent comment received so many thumbs down ?

May 18, 2020

emailed comment
The first photo on Liverpool docks - call it photo 0 - is I think a Neal mobile crane but it could be an early Jones?

1.is an early Hyster Karrycrane, 2 A Coles Mobile crane - they made several models that all looked similar the jib on this one looks as though it was 15 tonne? maybe smaller? If I am not mistaken it was diesel electric? 3. A 25 tonne Coles truck crane - fantastic machine. 4. A Lorain truck crane almost certainly ex US forces sold off after the war. 5. A Coles Hyrda Tuck crane? might be earlier than that? 6. Another Coles a 50 tonner??? 7. Coles telescopic truck crane 40 tonnes? 8.Easy one this the one in the foreground is a Grove TM300 built in Oxfrod and Bicester in UK 9.A Krupp All Terrain - might have Grove sticker if post dates it acquisition of the company? but probably n 80 tonne and finally 10. Looks like a Tadano Faun but not sure
Leigh Sparrow

May 16, 2020

#1 Hyster ? #4 Lorain #8 TMS 300 Grove. Very nice story, and hats off to Roadcraft !

May 15, 2020
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