Flag of China
Login     Sign up

The Joseph Lyddy Heritage

Australian light horse
Members of the Light Horse in France during the First World War.

Joseph Lyddy began as a business in 1893.

Back then Australia was still a group of independent colonies. A major ambition for many of the expanding population was to own their own horse. The individual horse was King.

The best of public transport was the horse-driven and privately owned Cobb & Co. Coach line. Horses were plentiful and manufacturing saddlers were numerous, but few of them ventured into the business of providing after-sales care of your saddle by manufacturing saddle soap and harness dressings.

Joseph Lyddy was Australia's pioneer in horse and saddle care and the quality of the service he provided was the key to his enduring success.

Joseph Lyddy’s first shop was close to Melbourne's Victoria Market. As his business expanded and he became more prosperous, Joseph Lyddy moved to a new bluestone building that still stands today. Ideally positioned in Lygon Street, Carlton, close to the University and between the modern landmarks of King and Godfree's Grocery and Jimmy Watson's Wine Saloon.

The first tins of Joseph Lyddy's Saddle Soap, Dubbin Boot Polish and Leather Dye were poured in this shop and the "Joseph Lyddy" name became famous.

The Joseph Lyddy name was well known to the famous Australian Light Horse Brigade. The "spit 'n' polish" of their tack and gear was critically important. The parade ground shine on leather boots and leggings, the gloss on a Sam Brown belt and the well-kept look of a trusted saddle more often than not came from a Joseph Lyddy product.

By the early 1920's it was time for a new factory to be built to meet with increasing demand. An architect was commissioned - Walter Burley Griffin was his name. The same Walter Burley Griffin who was to become famous with his design for the city of Canberra. His Joseph Lyddy building at 167 Fitzroy Street, Fitzroy, still stands as the only Melbourne example of a Griffin-designed manufacturing plant.

With the advent of the motor car, both the horse and the horse industry changed. The old farm and working horse gave way to the new sporting horse, the show horse, the racing horse. Moving with these new conditions, Waproo Pty Ltd acquired Joseph Lyddy and transferred all operations to accommodate the new personnel and equipment needed to serve the expanding business.

In 1993 Joseph Lyddy celebrated its 100th birthday.

After three generations, Joseph Lyddy is today a well-known brand to all who love horses. Whether you're a jumping professional, a seasoned endurance rider, a weekend pony-clubber, prospective Olympic contestant or Black Caviar’s champion racehorse trainer Peter Moody Racing, you'll know the value of Joseph Lyddy products to enhance your horse's appearance and performance.

The Joseph Lyddy name and products remain safe as a honoured part of the Australian family owned company Waproo Pty Ltd. A century of devotion to specialised manufacture and service continues to flourish with new products introduced to meet the changed demands of a new, modern market. Farriers' Choice, Shine Hair Tonic, Crib Stop, a range of Shampoos and Conditioner, and now the Black Caviar range of grooming products are but some of the new Joseph Lyddy items that symbolise the claim that the Joseph Lyddy name has passed the toughest test of all - the test of time.

It is a proud story of perseverance and high achievement. Joseph Lyddy horse care products are available to purchase here as well as from saddlery retail outlets, produce, camping and outdoor, and craft stores.