Stockford New Shop
By George Fullerton
At the end of March Stockford Reefer Services held a grand opening of their new service shop off exit 191 in Woodstock, New Brunswick. Formerly, Stockford worked out of a shop in Belleville, just off route 95, between Woodstock, New Brunswick and Houlton, Maine.
Matthew and Hilary Stockford own and manage the business since they purchased it from Matthew’s parents in 2013. “We had simply outgrown the old shop and we came to the decision to move closer to the Trans-Canada Highway that would put us in a location to better serve our customers. The old location on 95 was great for trucks heading to the US, but a little off the main route for a lot of operators,” explained Matthew Stockford.
Hilary described the new shop as being two and half times larger than the old one with two drive through bays and one back-in bay which also provides cross dock service which can be used to redistribute loads, as well as the ability to transfer customer reefer loads to Stockford’s own reefer trailers when necessary to complete repairs from inside the customer’s trailer.Hilary added that the new shop gets the offices out of their basement of their home and into more suitable facilities. The new shop also offers lots of room for an expanded parts department. The facility also offers a drivers’ lounge in the lobby, comfortable seating, TV, access to microwave and kitchen amenities and full washroom facilities.
Stockford Reefer Services was established by Arnold Stockford. Arnold began his career in Reefer servicing, initially while employed by Day and Ross Transport at their Hartland headquarters. Later he went to work in a small reefer specialty shop. After the owner died suddenly in 1997, Arnold and his wife Susan established Stockford Reefer Service in Belleville.
Matthew Stockford, literally grew up in the reefer service business, helping his father with jobs in the shop and service calls on the road.
Stockford carries a complete line of parts to service Carrier and Thermo King reefer units and their technicians are certified to handle warranty work on both manufacturers’ equipment. With the new shop, Stockford has also expanded to service trailers. In addition to their technical knowledge, they also stock parts to service lights, brakes, suspensions and other trailer repairs. They will handle repairs for any trailer manufacturer.
“For years our customers had been asking us if we would handle trailer repairs, so with the expanded facilities we are able to meet that request and provide a more complete service to our old and new customers,” Matthew continued.
They offer twenty-four hour service with a fully equipped service truck. The mobile service covers all of New Brunswick from the Quebec border. The service truck periodically makes extended calls to service reefer fleets in Caraquet in the northeast and Charlotte County in the southwest of the province.
Staffing has been increased to seven, with four full time technicians on the floor with Matt making the fifth tech when required. Arnold Stockford returned to the shop floor following the passing of his wife.
Matthew and Hilary are pleased to have Arnold’s talents and experience in the shop, and at the same time Arnold seems happy not to be handling the business side of the enterprise, claiming he is too young to retire.
Matthew shared that Arnold says he “can’t retire now because he has the opportunity to work in this nice new shop.”
Stockford also sells and services auxiliary power units as well as heaters for truck cabs and trailers. Stockford sells and services new Carrier APUs in addition to servicing Thermo King APUs.
The new location offers a secure yard with space for twenty trailers, and there is opportunity to further develop the yard to hold fifty to sixty trailers.
“We have a few customers who rent secure parking for trailers for weekends or layovers, but most trailer parking is for carriers using the secure facility as switch yard, dividing runs between points east and points west,” concluded Matthew.☚