Southern Plumbing Plus and Master Plumbers Association of ACT (MPA) celebrated their 40th birthday at the newly refurbished Southern Innovations Fyshwick Showroom on Thursday, 16 June. MPA members and SPP staff mixed business with pleasure at the 2016 Annual General Meeting (AGM) with a good old fashioned prawns, chicken and beer party - complete with birthday cake! Entertainment followed with special guest comedian, Luke Heggie, direct from the Sydney Comedy Festival. Guests were welcomed with drinks on arrival as they wandered through the recently relaunched showroom to check out the latest bathroom and kitchen products on offer from Southern Innovations. Warwick Beutler, Managing Director of Southern Plumbing, opened the meeting with a warm welcome and the order of business continued with MPA Executive Officer, John Stephens. The meeting ended with the ceremonial cutting of the cake by Warwick and MPA President, David Osborne. All attending members took home a SPP 40 Years Anniversary jacket with their slice of chocolate mud cake. 

Southern Plumbing Plus and Master Plumbers ACT have gone from strength to strength over the last 40 years, supporting the Canberra plumbing industry and watching it grow. From a humble plumbing supplies store in Fyshwick, Southern Plumbing Plus first grew to other areas of Canberra before expanding to regional New South Wales. By the time the Lyell Street headquarters opened in 2004, the company was represented in six regions and turning over more than $28 million. And Warwick says, "All of this could not happen without a team of quality staff who are dedicated to looking after their customers. It's what keeps our customers coming back!"

The Southern "family" has another reason to celebrate this year, with Southern Innovations coming home with the ACT Supplier of the Year Award from the Master Builders and Cbus Excellence in Building Awards. The award has been welcomed recognition of the solid reputation for customer service and a broad range of innovative products at a competitive price.

MPA began as an independent ACT association of Master Plumbers, Sanitary Engineers and Licensed Drainers in the late 1970s. A small group of 30 members and guests attended their first function at the Lobby Restaurant, Parkes in August, 1976. In the late 90s, the association became known as the Master Plumbers Association of ACT. And from there it grew with more members, sponsors and apprentices jumping on board. More than 200 members and guests attended the recent MPA Industry Awards at the Southern Cross Club, Woden on Friday 6 May. They've come a long way since their inaugural function in Parkes!

So congratulations to Southern Plumbing Plus and Master Plumbers ACT. Cheers to 40 years!