Reliability and professionalism for 58 years (and counting)


Tom Donohue)

Tom Donohue Plant Hire Limited was established in 1965, 58 years ago. 

Irish Trucker caught up with Tom Jnr. recently to hear a bit more about the origins of Tom Donohue Plant Hire and the state of the business for the second- generation venture.

Tom Jnr informed us that Tom Snr and his wife Kathleen returned from the UK in 1965. They then invested in machinery and did a lot of work in land drainage, building up a good reputation. 

When Tom Donohue Snr first started the business, he did so with just a couple of machines and built it year on year, gaining a golden reputation amongst clients along the way, as his son explained.

Tom Snr worked very hard through the years and there was always plenty of work, but things really changed when the housing boom came about in the early 90's. 

Although things slowed down in 2008, the business weathered the storm. 

After many successful years in business Tom and Kathleen have since retired and Tom Jnr and his wife Ciara now run the business.

Having trained as a plant mechanic in Dublin before joining the business, Tom Jnr had the ideal preparation and work under his belt before going full-time with his father.

“Business has been very good lately, I suppose, I have noticed a pick up since 2015,” explained Tom Jnr.

“Today the company has 19 employees with both male and female drivers.

“We mainly stock Scania lorries, Komatsu Diggers and Volvo dump trucks. We have five Scania Tippers and four Scania Arctics.

“We have Komatsu 210, Komatsu 360 and Volvo 380 diggers, rock breaking equipment and Volvo A30 and A40 dump trucks.

“We specialise in plant hire, rock breaking and site excavation. Most of our work is in the quarry industry.”

Tom added: “We do a lot of work with Plazamont Limited T/A Dan Morrissey, in their four different locations in Clonmesh, Ballyburn, Fenniscourt and Rathdrum. We have machinery and lorries with them since 2016. They are a top-class company to work for, and we have built up a great relationship with them which I am keen to see continue for many years to come.

“We have machinery with Roadstone Limited in various locations, Clogrennane Lime Limited and Trench Control Limited on a regular basis. We also undertake many one-off projects.”

The success of the company is largely due to a reliable and highly trained work force that have been loyal to the firm for several years.  

“The drivers have helped build the business, they take pride in and look after their trucks and machinery,” Tom explained

“Health and Safety is also a major concern and all our employees are competently trained on machinery driven and hold tickets and licences.

“With so much machinery to look after, maintenance is a high priority and avoiding downtime is an essential part of the business.

“The majority of maintenance is done by us. We try to keep most of the machinery relatively new, which cuts down on maintenance, but there is always the odd problem which crops up.

“The general practice is to expand the business on a steady basis, we try to keep machines up to date and replace every couple of years.”

Looking further down the road, the Donohue’s hope to one day see their company becoming a third-generation family business.

Tom Jnr has two sons, Ben and Adam and he hopes they will keep the Tom Donohue Plant Hire flag flying for many years to come.

Given its history so far, not many would bet against that vision one day coming to fruition.

Tom Donohue Plant Hire



Co Carlow


Mobile: 087 255 3379

E-mail: [email protected]

First published in Irish Trucker magazine Vol 26 No 3, May/June 2023