A logistical cakewalk for C Hughes spectacular Scanias

08 June 2016

C Hughes Logistics runs a fleet of nine Scania lorries, mostly doing continental work.

C Hughes Logistics runs a fleet of nine Scania lorries, mostly doing continental work.

C Hughes Logistics has specialised in providing first-class, prompt and dependable UK and international transport solutions since its inception in 2010. So founder / proprietor Christopher Hughes should have little difficulty finding his way from his Middletown, County Armagh base to Cavan Equestrian Centre come the second weekend in June! We caught up with the Monaghan man to get his views on all things Full of the Pipe…

Christopher Hughes attended the Full of the Pipe Truck Show Ireland for the first time in 2015. The bug bit! He had a great weekend in Cavan and will be there again for this year’s event. That’s what happens when the organisers put on such a good show – truckers and others tend to come back for another piece of the action.

“I head over to the Peterborough Truckfest and a few other bits and pieces but last year was my first time in Cavan and it was a really good show,” the Monaghan man states. “I brought the 2006 R620 [purchased second hand in 2012] and the brand-new 151-reg R620 last year and it went well.

“This year, I’m going to bring the 04 164 580 and one of the 620s. I’m not sure which one I’ll be bringing yet. The 164 580 has been freshly painted and wasn’t ready in time for Peterborough [May Bank Holiday weekend], so I’m definitely taking it over to Full of the Pipe Truck Show Ireland.”

Spectators and fellow truckers are in for a treat when they see the newly-revamped 2004-reg, while Christopher’s 620s are absolute beauties. There may be nine years between them but they both look fantastic!

His brother Ronan is also bringing his bullnose to the Full of the Pipe. “We’ll probably stay for the two days and make a weekend out of it,” he says. “It’s good to take a bit of time out. It breaks things up and everybody gets to see the money that’s spent on the lorries and the commitment that goes into it.

“I’d also take a good look at the other lorries over there and see if I can get any ideas on how to improve my own. You’re constantly trying to think of something that you could do to make them look better. I did the ’04 up five years ago and we’re doing it up again this year, so we’re hoping it’ll look the part in Cavan.” That’s a given!

C Hughes Logistics runs a fleet of nine Scania lorries, mostly doing continental work. The spectacular red-and-white Topline 6x2 151-reg is the newest addition (purchased from McElvaney Motors, it was the first brand-new truck added to the fleet) and Christopher says it’s likely that he’ll take the plunge and purchase another new unit next year.

While he’s looking forward to the craic at FOTP, the Monaghan man admits that he won’t be scrambling for any prizes: “I’ll just head over and enjoy the show. For me, it’s not about winning stuff. I don’t enter any of the competitions. I’ll just put them on display and enjoy the weekend.”

Following in the footsteps of his father Jerry, who was a lorry driver, Christopher Hughes has had a keen interest in trucks and all things haulage all his life. There’ll be many more like him at Full of the Pipe Truck Show Ireland 2016! It promises to be another great occasion.

The Hughes family from Tyholland, Monaghan is synonymous with haulage. Covering Scandinavia, Italy and the UK, C Hughes Logistics Ltd. has made tremendous progress since its genesis in April, 2010. During the intervening years, the eponymous founder has developed the business from a one-man, one-truck operation to run a striking fleet of nine immaculately-presented Scania tractor units. Christopher also owns and operates his own trailers, including curtainsiders and modern refrigerated units (Gray & Adams and Krone).

Since Day One, Scania has been very much the vehicle of choice. Regarding his love for the inimitable Swedish manufacturer, it’s a case of ‘why change a winning formula?’ “I’ve driven Scania since I started. My brother is a mechanic and he works with Scania, so it’s very handy that way. We all stick with them because that’s what we know. Up until last year, I sourced all my vehicles second-hand, wherever I could get the best deal. But I’ve bought my first new one from McElvaney Motors, to do work in Scandinavia and Italy, and I’m very happy with it,” he told Irish Trucker magazine recently.

One of Christopher’s aims moving the business forward is to freshen up the fleet even further, so more new additions could be on the cards somewhere down the line - funds permitting, of course: “We bought the new one to keep the maintenance and repairs bills etc. down and it has been working out well so far. A breakdown on the continent isn’t cheap and we’d like to avoid that happening if at all possible. The best way to do this is by running fresh and well-kept vehicles.”

The 151-reg came with a four-year, bumper-to-bumper warranty, which takes away a lot of potential headaches. The rest of the maintenance, checks, servicing and repairs are handled in-house.

C Hughes Logistics handles two or three loads per week to Sweden / Denmark; one load to Italy; plus three to England – one for McCulla Ireland in Lisburn and two for Morgan McLernon in Armagh. While the UK work is all refrigerated and beef is the main product transported to Sweden, Hyster and Yale forklifts are brought to Italy on behalf of NACCO materials handling group in Craigavon.

Having painstakingly built the company up from modest beginnings by providing an exceptional level of service, Christopher Hughes now finds himself in an encouraging position going forward. The future prospects of the business are very positive as long as he continues to provide the same high-quality solutions for which he has quickly become renowned.

All the lorries are busy and gainful employment is generated for a team of six full time. Christopher is a hands-on owner / director and he involves himself in every aspect of his business, including occasional driving. The trips can be long and demanding – six- or seven-day round trips to Sweden or Italy – but Full of the Pipe Truck Show Ireland weekend shouldn’t be too taxing. Just a short tip over to Cavan.

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