Cleaver’s Shearing was founded in 1949 by Ray Cleaver.
Ray had many clients scattered across NSW. His mainstay was the Pye Family group of properties who would shear around 100,000 to 120,000 sheep per year.
The 1950s saw the wool boom, with sheep numbers increasing and the strike of ’56, making labour hard to find. Ray battled through this and in the ’60s, the shearing industry became a bit more stable.
Ray was joined by his son, Brian, and together they built up a very good business, servicing clients over all areas of NSW; many of whom are still clients to this day. Ray retired in 1975 and his golden years was spent mostly on the Barwon River, chasing the elusive “Big One”.
Brian, after taking over the business, set about setting up a large client base shearing upwards of 400,000 sheep per year in the years 1987 to 1991. Brian has seen many changes in the shearing industry; wide combs, female workers and the end of the reserve wool price have had a great impact on the industry. The wide comb dispute lasted for 6 months, pitting mates against mates, and families divided on the pros and cons of their viability. These events changed the style of the shearing industry forever.
Since the early ’90s, falling wool prices, reduced sheep numbers, and drought have had a big influence on the industry.
Brian continues to carry on the business, started by his father, to this day and has a good and loyal team of workers, both male and female, servicing the shearing needs of a large area of NSW.