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UPDATED: Ampol has made a call on Byng Street site, as petrol station on Summer to be demolished

July 12, 2022

The site of the former Caltex. Copyright: Orange News Examiner.

UPDATED: Tuesday 7.10pm

The former Caltex fuel depot and service station near the rail line on Byng Street was for a long time an abandoned eyesore.

However the site is currently being "remediated" by workers.

Ampol has revealed that it will not build on the site once it has been cleared, instead selling it off.

An Ampol spokesperson told The Orange News Examiner on Tuesday night that the works were due to be completed by the end of this year. The land would then be "divested".

Meanwhile, Ampol has confirmed The Orange News Examiner's exclusive on Sunday about the future of the Caltex petrol station on the corner of Summer and Hill streets (see full story below). The station closed on July 4.

"Demolition and remediation works will commence later in the year to prepare the land for sale," said the spokesperson of the CBD site near the Summer Centre.

Ampol directed customers to Woolworths Caltex Orange on Summer Street or Woolworths Caltex Orange North on Hanrahan Place.

Sunday July 10, 2022

By Peter Holmes

On Sunday afternoon, behind temporary perimeter fencing, two men were cleaning out a petrol station shop and loading the contents into a hire truck.

A large Caltex sign - in what collectors might describe as reasonable condition - had been laid out on the ground. It will likely go back to company HQ, where you have to hope the person in charge is across American Pickers, and it doesn’t wind up in a skip bin.

The petrol station on the corner of Summer and Hill streets has been closed by Caltex, and the site’s long history selling fuel is thought to be over.

Big cleanout. Copyright: Orange News Examiner.

At the end of 2019 Caltex revealed it would be rebranding its sites to Ampol, a name Australians of a certain vintage would be very familiar with.

This was due to US energy giant Chevron - which sold its 50 percent stake in Caltex Australia in 2015 - revoking Caltex’s right to use that name.

Two days before Christmas in 2019 a statement was issued: “Caltex Australia Limited (ASX:CTX) today announces it has received a termination notice from Chevron Corporation regarding its current licence agreement for use of the Caltex brand in Australia.

“This follows 18 months of discussions with Chevron regarding the future of the licence agreement.

"Caltex today also announces it will proceed to implement existing plans to transition to the company-owned Ampol brand following a detailed brand strategy review.”

The block behind the petrol station, on Hill Street. Copyright: Orange News Examiner.

Ampol was founded in the mid-1930s as the Australian Motorists Petrol Company.

In May 1995 Ampol and Caltex merged petroleum refining and marketing assets to form Australian Petroleum Pty Ltd which, in 1997, became Caltex Petroleum Australia Ltd.

At that time the company housed three well-known brands: Ampol, Caltex and Golden Fleece - Caltex had taken over Golden Fleece, best known for its restaurants, in 1981.

"Although almost all of its business moved to using the Caltex branding at this time, the Ampol brand remained in use for a number of years in some country areas," the company's history states.

The Ampol brand was initially brought back in 2013 to be the face of Caltex’s trading and shipping business in Singapore.

The national rebranding announced in 2019, which Caltex said would be finished within three years, never reached the Caltex at the top of Summer Street.

Nor did the shop ever get the makeover it needed to compete with the nearby BP and Shell, with their coffees, pastries, protein balls, ready meals and discount groceries.

Despite this, it is understood the Caltex petrol station had a solid base of trade via businesses and government agencies using AmpolCards.

An aerial shot of the Caltex site and the block behind in on Hill Street. Google Earth.

The site also includes a block at the rear on Hill Street.

As The Orange News Examiner was viewing the site on Sunday afternoon, a man known to this organ was taking a leisurely constitutional with a neighbour.

During a brief chat the neighbour explained that in the 1960s the site was a Total petrol station that also used to sell second hand cars. Total is a French brand - Caltex bought Total Australia and Total Refineries Australia in 1983.

Comment has been sought from Caltex.

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