Patrick Bradley Ltd History

Patrick Bradley Limited was established in 1942 by the late Patrick Bradley of Kilrea. Today the Company continues to thrive as a family business drawing its employees from the local community.

Patrick Bradley started his business by supplying quarried stone for the formation of a local aerodrome in Aghadowey during World War II. This involved local stone being crushed into various sizes by a small mobile crusher powered by petrol driven engine. The stone was then shovelled onto horse and cart and transported to the aerodrome and other local sites.

With the rapid development of heavy machinery throughout the war years, a quarry at Tamneymore, Garvagh was purchased and developed in the late forties. Patrick Bradley used a Fowler Steam engine at this time in the processing of the stone. Years later this engine was traced and has subsequently been purchased and carefully restored to its former glory by Joe Bradley a son of the founder.

Transportation of the stone was through the use of 4 tipping lorries, each capable of carrying 7.5 tonnes. With the progression of the post war years, Government expenditure on the construction and maintenance of the road network increased and the Company continued to expand to meet these demands. Additional plant was purchased, the transport fleet was increased, a tar mixing plant was installed and significantly our first tarmac spreader was purchased.

In the early 1960’s our current location at Craigall was purchased and developed. A full range of new plant was installed and by 1969 all operations were successfully transferred to Craigall Quarry from the now dormant Tamneymore Quarry. Our output increased significantly and products were transported throughout Northern Ireland and Donegal using lorries now capable of hauling upwards of 20 tonnes.

By the mid-seventies, public expenditure patterns were changing with less expenditure on roads and more emphasis on social development needs:- including housing, education and health. While maintaining our market share in road-works and civil engineering the Company began a development programme to serve the needs of the ever increasing building market with the production of ready mix concrete and concrete blocks.

Over the years continual improvements to plant and procedures have ensured that our quality products meet all current specifications and standards. The old “tar” plant was replaced with a computerised asphalt mixing plant capable of an output of 140 tonne per hour. More recently site development and house building has been included in our portfolio together with the use of our stone as a natural building product. In 2012 the Company completed a contract supplying the stone for the façade of the new Giant’s Causeway Visitor Centre.

Today Patrick Bradley Ltd still operates from its base at Craigall with over 70 directly employed a similar number of a sub-contracted workforce. Patrick Bradley Ltd considers itself to be an integral part of the Kilrea and Garvagh community. We are regularly involved in various projects throughout the local area. Quarry visits are arranged for local schools where the children can learn about the industry, its processes and our surrounding environment.