Over 50 years of operations, Barlens has been witness to many industry changes from backyard picnics, to bell-bottom discos and sophisticated soirees.
Whilst Barlens’ commitment to providing high quality services and products hasn’t changed over the years, the technology and requirements of the community has.
In the early days the old traditional peg and pole marquee structure was used, which was a lot more labour intensive than the modern structures of today.
Founder Barry Whyte recalls the change in the industry.
“Going from peg and pole to the structure opened up a whole new field, you could really put quality products up that would stand up and wouldn’t blow down!” Barry said. “There were a few times when the wind would get the better of us and cause all sorts of nightmares, but with the ‘Höcker’ structures they were genuinely engineered to stand up in all sorts of weather.”
Not only are the ‘Höcker’ structures more sturdy, but they opened up an array of possibilities through their versatility.
Instead of a long rectangular marquee, you can build a number of shapes great for corporate events or weddings. Recently in Australia the common vinyl ‘Höcker’ wall has started moving to a hard walling system which will feature glass windows and doors. This is likely to be the next industry trend to transform Barlens’ offerings to provide truly unique structures for clients.
Operations Manager Greg Whittle says “We’ve become a lot more mechanised now, we’ve become a lot more efficient with the new products especially with our temporary structures.”
The structure hasn’t been the only thing to change, with Barlens being a part of great 60s picnics to 70s and 80s discos through to modern corporate events and great parties. The styles of chairs, plates and decorations have evolved over the years with Barlens staying at the forefront of style and industry trends.
Depths in numbers and capabilities have gone from 100 units of one style to up to 2,000. Opening the doors to corporate and community events such as Floriade, Enlighten, the PM’s XI and the SnowyHydro Southcare annual gala’s.
Current Barlens CEO Peter Taylor knows that the expectation for presentation at events has skyrocketed, with clean open lines and bigger spaces being favoured by clients.
“We’ve gone from a little cottage industry to more corporate structures. Even our parties have become more high-tech and sophisticated,” says Peter. “It’s an exciting industry to be in, there are always new styles to keep on top of to offer fresh inspiration and new ideas to our clients”.