Prominent Machinery Dealer Dies
Alan Ernest Doe, chairman of Ernest Doe & Sons Ltd the Ulting, Maldon, Essex based groundcare, agricultural and construction machinery dealership, died suddenly and peacefully on Saturday 26 July at the age of 85. Mr Doe was grandson of the company's founder Ernest Doe and still attended the company's offices five days a week.
The company has its roots firmly in the agricultural machinery world, but under Mr Doe's leadership diversified in the 1950s and 1960s into both groundcare and construction machinery. Ernest Doe and Sons has had a business relationship with Ransomes for virtually all its trading life. Although Ernest Doe founded his business in 1898, the business of Ransomes is far older.
Initially the business sold Ransomes agricultural implements. In the 1960s Alan Doe developed the relationship on the groundcare side which has seen the company become Ransomes Jacobsen's largest European dealer. Further developments in the 1970s saw Alan Doe developing the garden machinery side of Ernest Doe & Sons into a major retailer of Stihl, Husqvarna, Hayter, Honda and other global brands.
In February 1960, the first Doe Show was held with Alan Doe putting in place all the foundations of the show which is now a very well attended annual event and the most important three days in the company's trading year.
Under Mr Doe's leadership, and latterly with his son Colin, Ernest Doe & Sons have further increased the company's branch network. The company now employs over 500 people, trades from 19 locations across the whole of East Anglia, Kent, Surrey and Sussex and has a turnover of £115m.
Mr Doe is survived by his wife Jill, children Diana, Colin and Marian, and seven grandchildren.