Victor Harbor's Peter Toop celebrates the family business being in Victor Harbor for 70 years

RECOGNITION: Peter and Marlene Toop (centre) with staff at the Toop Motors RAA office in Ocean Street. Toop Motors celebrating its 70th birthday in 2020.
RECOGNITION: Peter and Marlene Toop (centre) with staff at the Toop Motors RAA office in Ocean Street. Toop Motors celebrating its 70th birthday in 2020.

Peter Toop in 2019 was acknowledged at the Beyond Bank Most Outstanding Business Awards being inducted into the Business Victor Harbor Hall of Fame.

After the family had been involved in business in Victor Harbor for 70 years, it was a little shock that Peter was not inducted sooner, but that was of no concern to the humble businessman.

But in 2020, on April 1, the Toop name and the important role it has played in the business community of the Fleurieu Peninsula celebrated its 70th anniversary.

Peter reminisces that his father Lew purchased Griffin's Garage from Freeman Motors in 1950 in Ocean Street, Victor Harbor and this started the iconic relationship that the Toop name has in Victor Harbor and in particular, Ocean Street.

Peter joined his father in 1952 and over the nearly 70 years, he has attributed any success of the business to the "magnificent" staff, past and present.

"I want to acknowledge the incredible role the staff and my family have played in our business success.

"There would be hundreds of people who have worked here over the years and I thank them all," Peter said.

"We had the fire station and ambulance two doors down and when I was first married to Gloria, we actually lived where the RAA office stands today in Ocean Street.

"I have some great memories and it was a great honour to be awarded Hall of Fame status."

Since April 1, 1950, Toop Motors has not strayed far from 66-68 Ocean Street.

In 1950, Toop Motors sold the GMH range of vehicles and was the RAA Road Service contractor.

"The showroom and workshop for Toop Motors is now the National Pharmacies building and the Victor Medical Centre stands where the used car yard once operated," Peter said.

In April 1987, Toop Motors became the RAA District Office in Victor Harbor and in 1996 the dealership and workshop moved to new premises in Maude Street and the current office site in Ocean Street was established.

In 2004 the dealership was sold and Toop Motors ceased operating as the RAA Road Service contractor.

Peter Toop has had a long and proud association with the RAA.

Peter Toop has had a long and proud association with the RAA.

However the relationship with the RAA has never ceased, as Toop Motors continued to operate as the RAA District office in Ocean Street.

RAA Senior Manager Retail Sales Matthew Selth said "RAA is proud of its association with Toop Motors and thanks Peter Toop and his team of dedicated staff for the wonderful service they have provided RAA's members over so many years."

"The relationship Toop Motors has had with the RAA is significant, as we have seen the business grow and develop to cater for the ever increasing needs for our local community," Peter added.

"A business cannot be successful and achieve longevity without amazing staff and we have been very fortunate to have had so many of them over the journey and we truly value everyone's contribution, be it present, or past.

"We could not have achieved what we have done without them. The fact our office has won many service excellence and RAA District Shop awards is testament to this. "

"I wish to acknowledge our long standing and rewarding association with the RAA and look forward to that continuing long into the future.

"Throughout my many years in business operating Toop Motors and selling vehicles, I have made many life long friends and it has been a fantastic community to be part of. Thank you to everybody."

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