William Loud served as a seaman for eleven years before settling in Melbourne in 1874, at the age of twenty five. He commenced a contracting business in that year, specialising in excavation work for city buildings and carting the spoil to the docks to provide ballast for sailing ships.
He extended his activities to all forms of earthworks and pavements, including the construction of many of the roadways in the cities of Melbourne and South Melbourne. His activities encompassed much of the history of Melbourne, as he was involved in cable tram tracks and the construction of the Ascot Racecourse opposite the Melbourne Showgrounds.
In 1904 his son, also William Loud, joined the firm. William Loud junior was actively involved until shortly before his death in 1970. The Loud family had an active involvement with the company for a period of 96 years.
Asphalt tennis courts and school playgrounds were always a considerable part of Wm Loud’s activities. This was extended to running tracks just before the 1956 Melbourne Olympics, when the Olympic Park track was constructed, together with tracks at Royal Park, the Olympic Village and a warm-up track outside the Melbourne Cricket Ground. The association with sport continued with the concrete terracing of five VFL grounds and numerous multi-purpose projects at schools throughout Melbourne.
The Plexipave/Plexicushion synthetic surfacing system was introduced into Victoria by Wm Loud in 1972, and has become the most popular acrylic hardcourt system in Australia. The Plexipave/Plexicushion system was chosen as the surface for the 1996 Olympic tennis tournament and is also the surface used at the new West Australian tennis centre.
In 2008 the Plexicushion Prestige system was chosen as the new surface for the Australian Open Tennis tournament and all of the lead up tournaments
In 1975 Reslite, an all-weather rubber asphalt surfacing for running tracks and other sports areas, was introduced. In more recent times the Polyflex system for athletics was added to the Company’s range of products. Wm Loud (Aust) Pty Ltd has more recently completed polyurethane Athletic tracks for Melbourne University, Frankston City, City of Whitehorse and many more.
Artificial grass surfacings are available in both dense pile and sand-filled carpet varieties. These carpets are installed for tennis, hockey, soccer and cricket, both indoor and outdoor, with rubber shock pads where appropriate.
New products are continually being evaluated by Wm Loud to test their suitability for Australian climatic conditions prior to their introduction into our range of products - for example rubberised golf pathways. Design facilities are available through our experienced and qualified engineers. Advice and assistance in the construction of sporting facilities, general civil construction projects and asphalting can be provided.