Awards, News, Truck events

Razorback Blockade Reunion will celebrate and honour courageous truckies

The National Road Transport Museum’s 2023 Festival of Transport is gearing up to be a must-attend event with the addition of the Razorback Blockade Reunion.

The reunion will celebrate the six courageous truck drivers who blocked the then-Hume highway near the famous Razorback Ridge in the name of protesting road maintenance taxes introduced as early as the 1950s.

Ted Stevens, Barry Grimson, Colin Bird, Jack Hibbert, Spencer Watling and Carl Goodfellow comprised the informal committee for the 1979 blockade. Their actions inspired a state-wide protest that lasted nine days, with similar blockades involving hundreds of drivers also occurring in Victoria and South Australia. Their efforts resulted in radical changes to the unfair taxation and operation practices that had plagued the industry for decades.

The Razorback Reunion will be held as part of the National Road Transport Museum’s Festival of Transport on August 26 in Alice Springs.

It promises to deliver a long overdue catch-up for surviving participants and a chance for the wider industry to hear their accounts firsthand.

The Truckies’ Reunion Breakfast will be an opportunity to share stories of the Blockade and the effect it had on all transport operators past and present.

The Shell Rimula exhibition hall and Wall of Fame recognises the industry’s many pioneers and game-changers.

Forming part of the Induction Ceremony for the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame inductees, Ted Stevens, Barry Grimson, Colin Bird, Jack Hibbert, Spencer Watling and Carl Goodfellow will be honoured as the inaugural recipients of the History Makers Award. The aptly named award seeks to recognise those industry members who have played a notable role in making transport more accessible and efficient.

Jac Lindner, operations manager at the museum, said, “The reunion is an opportunity for attendees to meet, chat and reminisce, and then see the men of the Razorback Blockade celebrated for what they did.

“We were looking for a way to acknowledge the men individually and as a collective for what they did, and so the History Makers Award was proposed as a yearly award to celebrate a significant moment in transport history.”

The Festival of Transport will take place from August 24-27. Tickets to the Truckies’ Reunion Breakfast and the rest of the exciting events on offer at the Festival of Transport can be purchased via the National Road Transport Museum website or by calling 08 8952 7161.

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