A company is born1972
Barton Petroleum Limited was formed in 1972 by Don Burton, with financial backing from Roger Toseland. Don was an experienced oil man having worked for Total Oil in Coventry and Roger was Chairman of the Bennie Group, a local family business in Barton Seagrave, active in multiple areas, who still exist today. The pair met volunteering for The Samaritans and struck a close friendship that led to them deciding to form an oil company. Operating from the front room in Don’s family house, they began trading with one second hand delivery tanker. Their first customer was Royal Blue Transport of Pytchley, Northamptonshire. Don’s father, Louis, would man the telephone and help where possible.
Middle Eastern War1973
Soon after the business was formed, the Yom Kippur war disrupted the supply of oil into the UK. Barton were being supplied by Pace Petroleum, run by maverick businessman Victor Gauntlet, who had been Don’s old boss at Total. However, due to the crisis, Pace could no longer supply the business.
The company had moved to a new site in a portacabin on Findon Road Industrial Estate, but with no oil to sell the future was bleak.
As hope was starting to fade, a young oil salesman from Amoco UK named John Searle stumbled across the portacabin. Amoco, part of the original Standard Oil of Indiana, had newly arrived in the UK and were looking for authorised distributors to sell the oil they were refining at Milford Haven, South Wales. One week later, a new supply contract was signed.
Another Crisis and business expansion1974
The Oil Embargo led by Saudi Arabia and the newly formed OPEC led to more oil shortages. Major oil companies were only able to supply a reduced percentage of their previous years volume. Luckily, as Barton had no previous year volume with Amoco, they were not limited in the amount they could purchase. This allowed the company to grow rapidly.
The same year, another opportunity to expand presented itself. The Bacal Building Group had gone bust and was calling in receivers. The group also happened to own the Amoco Distributor franchise and depots in Watford and Leicester.
Don Burton bought the depots from the receiver following a tip-off from Amoco. Overnight, the business tripled in size and Keith White (an old colleague of Don’s from his Total days) was brought in as Sales Manager to manage the expansion.
Aged 15, Richard Burton, Don’s eldest son (and present MD) began to see night deliveries into the depot, to give his father a break. The tankers would pick him up from the family home in Gold Street, Wellingborough as they drove past.
Richard Burton joins the business1984
Richard had been working for BP Oil Limited in London, since 1981. He joined the family company to establish a new distribution centre to cover Beds, Bucks and North Hertfordshire.
A new depot in Oakley, Bedfordshire1989
Through its connections with Gulf Oil Ltd, Barton moved to Oakley Depot near Bedford where they remain today, making it the fourth depot. By this time, Barton was independent, buying from up to 8 different major oil Companies in different locations.
The Buncefield Fire2005
Watford and Oakley Depots sourced most of their fuel from the Buncefield Oil Terminal in Hemel Hempstead. On 11th December 2005, a catastrophic fire destroyed the terminal. It was the largest fire in the UK since the second World War and a pall of smoke hung over the area for many months. Barton lost 50% of its supplies overnight and the terminal remained closed for a further 3 years. One year later, to increase the security of supply, Barton signed an authorised distributor agreement with ConocoPhillips Limited for 100% of its volume.
A new depot was opened in the heart of the Cotswold Hills between Moreton-in-Marsh and Broadway. 6 years later, we are supplying over 15 million litres per year to homes, farms, and industry in the surrounding area.
50 years in Business2022
2022 marks our 50th year in business – a very special anniversary that we will be celebrating in several different ways. Richard’s two sons Lawrence and Oliver Burton both work for the family business, making them the fourth generation to have worked for Barton Petroleum. None of this could be achieved without our loyal and highly valued customers and staff, some of whom have been with us right from the start. We will continue to value customers old and new as we look forward to the next half century.
Get to know us We are an independent, family owned fuel and lubricant supplier with our customers at heart
With over 50 years experience as a family run business, we know and appreciate the value of good customer relationships. The cornerstone of our continued success lies in the quality of the service we offer together with the efficiency and reliability of delivering our customers expectations.
years in business
million litres sold in 2021-22
of deliveries on time
Why Choose Us Reasons to choose Barton Petroleum
With over 50 years experience as a family run business, we know and appreciate the value of good customer relationships. The cornerstone of our continued success lies in the quality of the service we offer together with the efficiency and reliability of delivering our customers expectations. We invest in experienced, customer focussed staff and drivers and all of our depots have been awarded the prestigious Platinum status by the UK & Ireland Fuel Distributors Association, which represents the highest achievement for audits on legal compliance and industry best practice covering all aspects of Barton Petroleum’s operations. We have been a DVSA earned recognition (ER) transport operator since inception of the scheme in 2018 and we have been ISO9001 registered since 1993.
Knowledgable experts in fuels and oils
Over 50 years knowledge and experience in servicing the local market place.
Multiple depots offering local deliveries
With our own storage facilities we can provide a fast efficient service delivering within 48 hours or sooner.
Exceptional customer service at a fair price
We provide advice & assistance for all your domestic heating oil requirements from tank installations and boiler maintenance to servicing via approved engineers.