Alastair and Stuart McKenzie

K&S McKenzie first opened its doors in 1968 in Carlisle, Cumbria. At the time there was a shortage of parts suppliers to the commercial vehicle market in the area and it was this opportunity that Keith McKenzie knew was too good to let pass him by. Over 50 years on and we are proud to be one of the most well-respected motor factors in the North West.

K&S McKenzie in 1972

Keith always had an eye for business and could spot a good opportunity a mile away. In 1972 he was on the lookout for some new premises and came across a newly developing industrial estate on the outskirts of the city. This location had excellent road links and was the perfect site for him to build K&S McKenzie’s new head office. We were one of just 10 businesses to move into the area that year, an area that today forms one of the largest industrial estates in Carlisle, home to the likes of Eddie Stobart, Travis Perkins, and ParcelForce Worldwide, to name but a few.

Keith owned the business with his wife Sara. They were the perfect team; Keith working directly with the customers, and Sara taking care of the day-to-day running of the office. Their dedication and teamwork saw the business continue to thrive and before the decade was out we would further expand our warehouse and office.

The 1980s saw the next generation start to work in the business with Keith and Sara’s sons Stuart and Alastair taking active roles. This was also a period that saw K&S McKenzie meet a huge challenge – the decline of Keith’s health. This was an illness that was to stay with him for 11 years until his death in 1996. Keith’s sons spent this decade working alongside their father, soaking up the knowledge he held and learning about the things that really matter in business… good, honest service. It was the knowledge and passion Keith held that remained with Stuart and Alastair following his passing and remains with them to this day.

Sara continued to manage the business, aided by her sons who over the years, and following in their father’s footsteps, were always on the lookout for new opportunities that would further elevate the service offering of K&S McKenzie. This saw the addition of lifting products to our portfolio, something which is today a major product in our range, as well as the launch of our website via which we sell thousands of products.

K&S McKenzie’s AdBlue Tanker

2006 brought with it the introduction of AdBlue to the marketplace which led to another opportunity for the business and saw K&S McKenzie become one of the first companies to store and sell AdBlue. Today we are a major supplier of the product across the whole of the UK. We also provide an expert chain testing and calibration service, compressor maintenance and servicing, are a BOC Gas agent, and offer a wide-ranging variety of products and services unique to our business.

K&S McKenzie Monster Truck

2021 saw the sad passing of Sara McKenzie. Sara had always been a driving force behind the business, supporting her sons and offering many a valuable piece of advice over the years. With her passing came a new focus on the next generation of the business and as such, her grandson Brandon (Stuart’s son) stepped forward to take on a more active, managerial role with a special focus on our Tool Centre.


Tool Centre Carlisle

Tool Centre, Carlisle

We opened our Tool Centre in 2020 – in the midst of a global pandemic – and since then it has gone from strength-to-strength.

The Tool Centre houses a huge variety of tools and equipment, ranging from DIY and entry-level items to professional and industrial equipment. In addition, the store is also home to a range of consumables, workshop equipment, and one of the largest displays of toolboxes in the North.

Brandon and his partner, India, have relished the opportunity to further grow the family business and their success to-date certainly bodes well for a positive future for the K&S McKenzie brand.

We operate all over the UK from our base in Carlisle and provide services to small businesses as well as delivering major contracts for large organisations stretching from the very northern tip of Scotland, down to the south coast of England.

Speaking about the factors that have helped the business reach this 50-year milestone Stuart McKenzie, Director, says;

“I learnt from my father the value of seizing opportunity, having a fantastic supply and distribution chain, and importantly on never swaying from the values and focus on service that formed the foundation of this business all those years ago. It is this that drives us forward, builds our customer base, and makes us more than just a motor factor”.

To learn more about K&S McKenzie and how we can help you or your business, contact us today on 01228 528218 or click here.