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McConaghy Refrigerated Distribution Limited

The History of McConaghy Refrigerated Distribution Ltd

1997 - 2003

Richard McConaghy obtained a CPC operator's licence and formed McConaghy Refrigerated Distribution in 1997. The first vehicle was a rigid Volvo FL6-12.

A year later saw the business move into its current site, with it employing 2 drivers and the fleet increasing to 3 vehicles. One driver has since retired whilst the other is the longest serving driver.

Jacki, Richard's wife, helped behind the scenes whilst bringing up their young children, Lauren and Gavin.

By the end of 2003 there were 10 employees, 8 vehicles, 5 tractor units and 3 rigid vehicles and a much improved operating base.


2003 - 2008

The business and Richard's son Gavin continued to grow steadily over this period. Gavin's passion for lorries and the business was obvious and he helped out whenever he wasn't at school, washing lorries and loading/unloading trailers.

McConaghy Refrigerated Distribution had grown to 12 full time employees and 10 vehicles by 2004.

Jacki managed the office whilst Richard managed the loads; jumping back behind the wheel whenever necessary.

2008 saw the establishment of an Operations Managers post and a long standing employee being promoted into the post. Clive Elder continues in this post.



2009 was a challenging time for hauliers, just as it was for many other businesses, due to the economic downturn.

This regrettably resulted in a slight reduction in the number of employees and vehicles.

The decision to reduce the scope of operations allowed the business to consolidate and safeguarded its financial future.

There was a slow upturn in business and the number of employees and vehicles were slowly and cautiously increased towards the end of 2012.



The need to attract new talent into the business was obvious. Two school leavers were recruited into the business and put through a structured development programme. This proved very successful and 2 years on both secured their C+E licenses on their first attempt. Both continue to show clear potential for the future.

The end of 2013 saw the conclusion of an 18 month investment programme. This included the purchase of new Euro compliant tractor units, new trailers and new build of 365 square metres of chilled and ambient storage, a new transport planning office, new driver facilities, new maintenance area and a new conference room.



There was a slow upturn in business and the number of employees and vehicles were slowly and cautiously increased.

2014 saw McConaghy Refrigerated Distribution change from a sole trading company to a limited company with Richard McConaghy continuing as Managing Director.

McConaghy Refrigerated Distribution achieved BRC accreditation in 2014.



Michael Armstrong was welcomed to the management team as Compliance Manager in July 2015.

McConaghy Refrigerated Distribution Limited was one of the first haulage operators in Northern Ireland to achieve a high pass on an unannounced BRC audit a short time thereafter.

Site security was increased and enhanced, remotely monitored Close Circuit Television was installed across the entire site and all vehicle cabs were fitted with Instant Video Transmission Accident Cameras to reduce potential collisions.

The business’s current IT management system was replaced with Stratum’s logistics, planning and management software to further improve proactive customer service and to streamline fleet compliance, in-cab communication systems, GPS integration, cost computing and workshop & stock management.

The introduction of the Stratum system saw Conor Spence being welcomed into the newly created post of Logistics Support/Traffic Planner.

September 2015 saw McConaghy Refrigerated Distribution Limited as finalists at the annual Export and Freight Transport & Logistics Awards in both the Chilled Operator of the Year and Driver of the Year categories, following anonymous nominations.

© McConaghy Refrigerated Distribution Limited