Bretts timber sawmill at Windsor, Brisbane circa 1920's
Bretts have been talking timber and hardware for over 100 years. In the 21st Century, Bretts is structured around five major divisions, each one stemming from our timber and hardware origins.
Bretts has been part of the Queensland building landscape for over a century. In 1918 B.C Brett & Co was established and shortly after purchased Brisbane Sawmills, the largest sawmill in Brisbane that operated on the former site of Bretts Timber & Hardware on Newmarket Road in Windsor.
Bretts draws on the experience and knowledge built up over the past 100 years, to offer builders and tradespeople the most comprehensive range of timber and building materials in the State.
Bretts remains a staunch independent in today’s rapidly changing market. And while flexible enough to diversify where necessary Bretts sticks rigidly to values that reflect the importance of tradition, quality and family.
Trade Timber & Hardware
Bretts offers one of the largest ranges of building products and general hardware in Brisbane. We're talking everything from kitchen and bathroom products, windows and doors, decking and flooring, door handles and locks, to major electrical appliances, paint, trade tools, fasteners and sealants, structural and decorative timber and other building materials.
For more than 100 years, Bretts has supplied the domestic and commercial building industry with a vast range of building materials, Of course, we also have specialist staff available who will be happy to talk you through your options - from slab hardware through to roofing and everything in-between.
Operating from seven sites, Geebung is home to our manufacturing facility and our trade distribution centre. We also operate our five trade stores including a dedicated plumbing business at Narangba.
Read more about our trade products, Bretts Trade
Trade Plumbing Supplies
Bretts are members of Plumbing Plus, a national plumbing supply group with over 160 plumbing stores across Australia. Bretts trade plumbing business at Narangba offers solutions to plumbers and builders for residential, commercial and civil projects. Products are sourced from around the world to bring a very competitive mix to suit any project budget.
Bretts have recently opened Studio B at the Rode Rd Chermside site, a dedicated Selection Centre to help consumers choose from the very best in bathroom fittings and appliances. Displays include iconic brands like: Villeroy & Boch, Caroma, Hansa, Clark, Dorf, Astra Walker, Decina as well as a complete range of aluminium windows, doors and door hardware.
Read more about our bathware and appliance products, Bathware and Appliances
Commercial Hardware & Locksmiths
Bretts Architectural Hardware is Brisbane’s oldest commercial hardware supplier, having supplied the domestic and commercial building industry with a vast range of architecturally designed hardware products. Commercial supplies everything required for a door in the way of locks and hardware fittings, including full Locksmith workshop and a team of qualified Locksmiths. In addition to this, the commercial hardware division can also supply a full complement of washroom equipment and PWD hardware. We also have specialist Architectural staff available to help project manage large commercial jobs.
Read more about our commercial hardware products, Commercial Hardware
Aluminium Windows & Doors
Bretts have been manufacturing AWS Vantage & Elevate Commercial series for over 12 years, and are now Queensland's only Sales Partner for the unique bespoke architectural Swiss Sky-Frame system, and Belgium's Reynaers systems for high-end residential buildings.
Sky-Frame and Reynaers systems are European designed, these exceptional architectural systems combine a minimalist design with advanced engineering to allow for significantly larger panels. They also feature concealed top and bottom frames to create a seamless transition between indoors and out.
Our high-quality, made-to-order aluminium joinery products have solutions for a wide range of applications. The products are extremely low maintenance, never needing to be painted or stained, and will not warp or shrink like timber. Depending on your design application there is an endless choice of colours, sizes and styles available.
The ranges encompass a full array of configurations. Doors include: Sliding, Stacking and Pivot. Windows include; Double Hung, Awning, Casement, Bi-fold, Louvre, Sashless and Fixed. To complete our offer we have matching ranges of insect and security screens.
Our team of professionals are highly trained with extensive industry experience allowing Bretts to help from design and installation to after-sales service.
Read more about our aluminium joinery products, Windows and Doors
Believe it or not, the more timber you use in your new home, the greener it will be. The production of timber products used to build a house actually results in far fewer greenhouse gas emissions than in the manufacture of comparative concrete, steel, brick, tile or aluminium components. And trees store carbon too. So by building with as much timber as possible, you are actually sequestering carbon and preventing it from escaping as harmful CO2.
Bretts continue to commission new equipment for the Frame & Truss plant in order to keep up with demand and ensure we maintain the most up to date, state-of-the-art technology. With a dedicated estimating and detailing team on site, you can also be sure that plan take-offs are accurately and seamlessly transferred into quotation, and ultimately, finished products.
Read more about our timber frame and truss products, Frame & Truss
Bretts also offer a total solution for steel construction, utilising the latest technology to pre-fabricate house frames and trusses for residential and commercial applications. A building frame manufactured by Bretts from TRUECORE® steel is strong, straight and precise; it won’t twist or warp over time and won’t catch fire. What's more, it’s termite proof.
Our machinery is the latest and best on the market, providing efficient and effective framing solutions. The roll forming machinery we use is fully integrated with production software to ensure precision and accuracy during the manufacturing and assembly process. Our system is fully automated, which means no manual cutting or punching required, resulting in very simple frame assembly.
Using these prefabrication technologies, Bretts have value added to also provide a turn-key modular solution for Builders and consumers alike.
Discover the Bretts advantage, we use the latest technology & knowhow to design & fabricate frame & trusses faster & cheaper.
Read more about our steel prefabrication Steel frames
Let's Talk History
Brisbane Sawmills established at Newmarket Road, Windsor.
BC Brett & Co is incorporated and a Pine sawmill established at Emu Vale near Warwick.
Brisbane Sawmills is purchased by BC Brett & Co and adjoining land is acquired to house the new Hoop Pine mill.
Brett & Company formed and a head office set up in Eagle Street in Brisbane city.
The first Hardware store opened at Grey Street and further land is purchased at Windsor bringing total area to 35 acres (incorporating what is now Downey Park).
Bretts Wharf is constructed and the first vessel, the 11,628 oil tanker MV Australia, docks.
Yarraman Pine Pty Ltd (a Hoop Pine sawmill) is purchased from the Queensland Government in a consortium that included Finlayson’s Timber.
60 perches of land is purchased on the corner of Ernest and Grey Street, South Brisbane to house the newly formed steel division.
Within days of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbour; Bretts Wharf is requisitioned by the US Army and not returned to the company until 1946.
Bretts gained control of additional sawmills at Jandowae, Chinchilla, Dalby, Kogan, Darr Creek, Fairyland, Cecil Plains, Millmerran, and Ducklo.
Making plans for post-war future enterprises, given the pressing need for housing was a project for manufacturing prefabricated homes, and errecting them on land acquired at Enoggera and Newmarket.
Inglewood Sawmills Pty Ltd, a Cypress sawmill still operating today, is purchased.
Bretts Timber Agencies Pty Ltd established a warehouse in Sydney to wholesale the growing range of Bretts manufactured timber products in the southern states.
More land and buildings are acquired in Merivale Street, South Brisbane, to house the expanding steel division.
The Glass department is established at Windsor.
Bretts installed the largest and most advanced Plywood manufacturing machinery in Australia at a cost of over $350,000.
A decision was made to take space in both the shopping centres at Indooroopilly and Brookside and hardware stores commenced trading.
Flooding inundated large parts of the Windsor property incurring over half a million dollars’ worth of damage, as well as massive damage to South Brisbane hardware store.
Bretts steel and roofing, building boards and laminates and sheet metal manufacturing divisions are established at Kessels road Macgregor after moving from their South Brisbane location.
A hardware store is opened in Wharf Street, Ipswich.
Last four blocks on northern side of Newmarket Road at Windsor are sold.
A decision is made to dispose of small hardware stores and develop two major stores on either side of town to combat the likely arrival of warehouse retailers. The Grey Street Hardware store and head office are demolished and businesses relocated to make way for World Expo ‘88.
Timber processor, Mouldings Pty Ltd at Underwood, is acquired.
Bretts opened a business at Tweed Heads to distribute Moulding and fix-out hardware to Gold Coast builders.
Two dedcated power tool outlets aquired in Townsville and Cairns
Bretts Timber in Cairns was established to supply Plywood and cabinet supplies to Northern markets.
Bretts Wharf closed and construction commences for redevelopment into multi residential facility.
Bretts Steel division is sold to Metalcorp.
All hardware stores, excluding Windsor, are sold to Hudsons Building Supplies.
Windsor site redeveloped into present multi use facility and freehold sold to ING Property Trust.
The Nutting family purchase the remaining shares not owned by them in a friendly take-over.
Bretts Design is sold to Maxi Industries, to allow the company to concentrate on the core business of building materials. Bretts Glass and Aluminium established in rented premises at Hamilton.
Bretts Frame & Truss established. Bretts Architectural showroom established to provide Brisbane with it’s only complete Architectural product selection centre.
All manufacturing businesses are relocated to one significant site at Geebung. Bretts celebrates 100 years in operation.
Bretts open trade store at 711 Beaudesert rd. Rocklea.
Bretts open trade store at 30 Cessna Dr. Caboolture.
Dedicated plumbing supply business opened at Narangba.
Bretts purchase Mortons Hardware at Wynnum and convert it into a Bretts trade store.
Bretts purchase Hudsons Building Supplies at 69 Cavendish Road Coorparoo, making the total number of trade stores to 7 including the dedicated plumbing supply business at Narangba.
The Caboolture store relocates into larger premises at Caboolture to cater for growing demand in the region.
Steel roll forming plant is commissioned at Geebung, catering to the growing demand in Steel house frames.
Commenced production of Sky-Frame and Brettstar windows & doors.
Rocklea store moved to new location at 80 Johnson Road, Browns Plains.
The Bretts manufacturing facility at Geebung commissioned a steel roll forming line and starts manufacturing Steel Framing.
Structural steel division is established to augment the frame and truss production lines.
Former Chermside Mitre 10 acquired by Bretts and completely renovated and rebranded as a Bretts Trade store.
Bretts commence manufacturing Prefabricated Modular Homes, and showcase at the 2019 Brisbane Home show.
Bretts Windsor announces its closure after over 100 years trading from the site. The Trade Timber and Hardware store, and Administration relocate to Chermside, while the Commercial Architectural Hardware and Locksmith business relocate to new premises at Albion.
Let's talk community
As a business that's been operating in Brisbane since 1918, Bretts understands the value of building solid and lasting relationships with the people who operate in our local community. And we aim to have a positive impact on the broader community.
We like to contribute in different ways, including providing donations and in-kind support, and contributing to programs that deliver targeted social benefits. However, underpinning our community efforts programme is a sponsorship portfolio that focuses on providing regular support to local schools and other community groups in our own neighbourhood.
Let's talk environment
Thanks to climate change, green building is firmly on the agenda. While some say that greener building practices are being driven by regulations rather than consumers, other studies show that demand is building amongst consumers. And this demand for more sustainable solutions will increase as more "Generation Y's" enter the housing market.
So is there an economic benefit to designing and building greener homes? Recent research says there is, with one US study of home builders finding that, nationwide, over 80 percent of home-seekers prefer to buy homes that incorporate sustainable or energy-efficient features. And of those buyers, half are willing to pay between 11 - 25 percent more for environmentally friendly homes. (Source: "Green House Effect" Can Boost Sales Price for Home Sellers, Building Online, 7 March 2007).The various state energy efficiency and building rating systems have been under the microscope over the past two years. In March 2006 it became law in Queensland for new houses to be more sustainable by ensuring they use water and energy more efficiently. The desired result is that new houses will use 33 percent less electricity and up to 36 percent less water. And further changes in regulations and tougher restrictions are likely to follow.