10/05/2021 - 15:12 pm

Street Crane celebrates 75 years of lifting 

Street Crane Company, celebrates its 75th year of continual innovation in crane technology. The company has over 100 international distributors of its UK designed and manufactured advanced hoists and controls, and is the country’s largest supplier of factory cranes across all key industrial sectors. For speedy customer service in North and South America, Street recently opened a dedicated facility in Houston to stock an extensive range of hoists, crane kits and parts.

International expansion is continuing apace despite the pandemic, with the launch of Eazycrane at the end of 2020. The online crane configuration software puts 75 years of know-how and expertise at the fingertips of Street Crane’s distributors around the world. The result of a self-financed, ten-year investment to automate crane design, drawing, component selection, quotations and order processing, Eazycrane enables Street and its distributors to work within a single system.

Managing director, Gus Zona, said, “Due to Covid restrictions, it is unlikely that we will be able to mark our 75th year as we have done similar milestones in the past, when many of our distributors were able to easily visit. However, in what has been a difficult year for everyone, reaching 75 is a note of positive news. Even more positive is that the spirit of our founder continues to drive us forward.”

Becoming the UK’s largest producer of factory overhead, gantry and jib cranes and a global supplier of advance hoists and controls is a journey that started with Peter R Street, a World War II pilot flying Spitfires, Hurricanes and giant Horsa gliders. In 1946, with eighty-eight Pounds Stirling in his pocket, given to him by the Royal Air Force as ‘gratuity’ for his service to the country, he decided to start a crane company in Sheffield England and to buy the first company vehicle – a motorbike and side car. He then set about repairing factory cranes in an industrial landscape decimated by war.

Martin Street, Peter’s son and current company chairman, said, “Sadly, Peter is no longer with us, but his spirit lives on. While Covid hasn’t destroyed industrial infrastructure in the way bombs did all those years ago, he would see similarities in the need to invest, rebuild and innovate.”

Innovation was at the core of Street Crane’s success from the very beginning. In post war Britain there were shortages and government controls allocating available materials by strategic priority. Wound rotor motors used at the time to give smooth acceleration on crane travel motions were very hard to find. Peter’s solution was to employ fluid couplings and freely available four-pole motors which meant Street could offer equal or better acceleration at lower prices and shorter lead times.

Moving forward to today, the current Street ZX hoist range is the sixth generation of hoisting equipment the company has designed and serially manufactured.

“Had Peter survived he would have celebrated his 100th birthday this year. Another good reason to remember our founder and the generations of colleagues who did the groundwork upon which we are building our future ability to meet the challenging and changing lifting needs of a rapidly changing global marketplace,” Martin Street concluded.

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LHI March 2024

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