Pivot Stove & Heating is more than just Geelong’s premier supplier of wood and electric stoves and heaters. With six generations of Australian owned and operated history behind them, Pivot Stove & Heating are a local icon. We explore their story and find out their secret to success
Pivot Stove & Heating Co started back in 1876. Six generations on, Pivot Stove is now one of the few original companies that are still 100% owned by Greg Parker-Hill and his wife, Tammie – making them one of Australia’s longest running family business.
How Geelong (and Pivot Stoves) started
The Pivot City is the original name of the township now called Geelong. This name came from a special turn table that was constructed to turn a 300,000 pound steam train around ( because steam trains back in 1800’s didn’t go backwards) so they could return back to Melbourne full of equipment that arrived from the Tall Ships that sailed in Corio Bay.
This turn table was called a ‘Pivot Turn Table’, and with 4 Clydesdale horses tethered to the pivot table to turn the trains around, it was a sight to be seen.
The PIVOT name become iconic to our town, and even today locals called this Geelong, ‘Pivot’ : even the Geelong Football Club membership are called the ‘Pivotonians’.
From 1820 to 1880, Pivot City was a booming satellite town with the tall sailing ships from England arrived, sometimes daily, coming into Corio Bay (because of the natural deep bay) to be unloaded at Cunningham Pier.
Cunninham Pier was vital to Pivot City’s existence; The yields of the booming wool trade, and the gold from Ballarat and Bendigo, were all loaded back on the tall ships to head back to the UK, making Pivot City a vital corridor for all trade in the 1800’s. It wasn’t until mid 1800’s the town was officially named to Geelong : from the local aboriginal name “Jillong”: meaning land of “hills and plains”. But the locals kept calling the new town of Geelong, Pivot City .
Today, Pivot City (or Geelong) is a beautiful town, with city to surf only minutes drive apart.
As for Pivot Stove, the business originated back in 1876 when founder James Alexander Parker, moved from Glenferry Road, Malvern, to set up shop at Moorabool Street address, where he proceeded to manufacture the 1st Australian made slow combustion wood stove, The Pivot Stove.
Naming the business after his new home town : Pivot Stove was born, and in their Moorabool Street showroom (still at the same location), you can still see one of the 1st ever Pivot Stoves they made.
The business today
Greg Parker-Hill (son of Merril) and his wife Tammie took over Pivot Stove in 2006. Growing up at the house at the back of the Moorabool street, from very early days, Greg worked with his father learning to service oil heaters. He eventually did a plumbing apprenticeship and worked installing , servicing and re-building wood heaters and cookers for over 20 years.
In 2006, Greg, and his wife Tammie, took over Pivot Stove and Greg looked world wide to find products that would take Pivot to being a true leader in the heating industry
- ESSE Cookers: hand-made in England since 1854 returned Pivot to their original passion, cooking.
- Pacific Energy: Canadian-made heaters that are made to work in the harshest of conditions and have the latest in efficiency and low emissions.
- Pyroclassic: NZ-made, Pyroclassic are known for having a low environmental impact.
- Yunca: For homes that live off the grid, these can also heat your water and are one of New Zealand’s most loved wood heaters.
Pivot now employ’s over 18 people and an additional 20+ offsite contractors rely on Pivot Stove & Heating. Greg and his wife Tammie continue to be heavily involved in local business and support the BUY LOCAL campaigns throughout Australia.
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