Our History

1981

The Northgate journey started back in 1981 when Alan Noble began renting vehicles from his home in Hurworth, Darlington under the name of Noble Self Drive Limited. Fast forward 30 years, and you’ll discover that our commitment and determination has never been stronger. Here’s our full journey in more detail.

Alan Noble purchased six vehicles to hire to customers before expanding his fleet to fifty and establishing Noble Van & Plant Hire Ltd.

1983

Noble Van & Plant Hire Ltd made their first acquisition, another North East based company called Transmore Van Hire. They went on to acquire further small and successful businesses around the UK and Republic of Ireland over the next 24 years.

1986

Northgate Motor Holdings Ltd was established as a holding company.

1987

At the peak of its growth as a limited company they were acquired by Goode Durrant plc for £4.2million.

1989

Northgate Vehicle Sales Ltd was established.

1996

Northgate achieve a major milestone when their fleet size reaches 10,000.

1999

Goode Durrant plc announced that it would be relocating from the City of London to the North East following the company’s decision to change its name to Northgate plc.

2000

Company name changes from Northgate Motor Holdings Ltd to Northgate Vehicle Hire Ltd.

2001

Northgate purchases a ‘green field’ site in the Republic of Ireland and builds its first hire depot outside of the UK.

Northgate opens 50th site.

2002

Northgate plc expanded into Europe through the acquisition of Fualsa and Record Rent-a-Car in Spain.

2003

Northgate Vehicle Solutions Ltd was launched within the head office to serve customers who had national daily rental needs and required a single point of contact.

2004

Van Monster, a new brand offering remarketed vehicles to the retail market, is launched.

2006

A restructure was completed within the hire business with locations merging. Fleet Technique Ltd (a specialist fleet management business) was also acquired.

2008

Northgate Vehicle Hire Ltd was named Van Rental Company of the Year in the National Fleet Awards.

2010

The whole company rebranded to Northgate Vehicle Hire Ltd with the project delivering new signage, livery, reception areas, stationery and work wear across all sites.

2011

30th anniversary year at Northgate plc.

2012

Northgate Customer Support Centre opened on the 29th of October.

2013

Northgate’s expansion programme commences with new sites opening.

2014

Another six new sites open.

2015

Another four new sites open.

Northgate rebrands all Vehicle Sales sites with the Van Monster brand.

2016/2017

2016/2017 has seen many exciting changes! We have welcomed several new members to our UK Executive team including Kevin Bradshaw as our CEO, Frank Hayes as Managing Director, Mike Speakman as Operations Director, Kim Knight as HR Director and Neil McCrossan as our Sales Director.