The business was started in 1946 by Lyle Bonney, who'd started his working life in the transport business in 1922 as a grocery boy doing deliveries with a horse and cart around Titirangi.
He stepped up to running his own enterprise in the late 1920s running a Ford Model T as a delivery truck, picking up 56lb blocks of butter that his wife Rita, his mother and mother-in-law cut up into one-pound blocks for delivery to west Auckland grocery shops. In his spare time Lyle also ran a taxi in Auckland.
Lyle also owned a chicken farm which he sold in 1946 and launched L.W.Bonney and Son with his eldest son Alven running milk trucks from the family home in Papatoetoe. The next 13 years they continued delivering milk to the East Tamaki Dairy Company and into the city to the Auckland Milk Corporation, they ventured into carting meat and then coal.
About 1954 the name changed on the company's expanding fleet to read L.W. Bonney & Sons, Alven's younger brother Selwyn joining the business.
The Bonney yard in Drury in the early 1950s. Founder Lyle Bonney is on the right,
with son Alven centre and one of their drivers, Bob Vincent, on the left.
Next came grains from around Waikato to Auckland. LWB became one of the first companies to tow tankers or trailers in Auckland on bulk products. The business continued steadily expanding and in the early 1970's Calven Bonney, Lyle's grandson, joined LWB. About this time Lyle Bonney died leaving his share to his wife Rita who continued to play a key role along with her sons Alven and Selwyn.
Calven Bonney started his own trucking company C.D. Bonney Ltd. The two Bonney companies worked together until eventually Calven sold out to TNT in the early 1980s and went back to driving for LWB and running his own business making sun visors for trucks. In 1984 Calvin bought the LWB fleet which had shrunk to a fraction of its former self. It amounted to just three trucks, a Mack semi and trailer, a TM Bedford 8 wheeler with a three-axle trailer and an International six-wheeler and three-axle trailer.