Ross Baldwin, Geoff Curnow, Randolph Creswell, Reg Hobbs and Bryan Kelly established Flagstaff Consulting Group in Melbourne, April 1995. They had all spent a considerable part of their careers with the John Holland construction group, although not all at the same time.
Ross Baldwin had been Managing Director of John Holland Asia, Randolph Creswell (deceased in 2000) had recently retired as the Managing Director of the John Holland Group, Geoff Curnow was Group Chief Engineer and Reg Hobbs was General Manager of the Support Services Group. Bryan Kelly, who was a director of John Holland until 1986 had recently retired from the position of Chief Executive of Jennings Construction Services on the sale of that business to the Fletcher Challenge Group.
We grew quickly, with a wide range of Government and private sector clients seeking our services in areas such as strategic project management, contractual matters, cost engineering, time programming, risk analysis, project review, audit and problem solving.
In 2003, Flagstaff opened its second office in Brisbane, led by Directors Ian Harrington, Ric Barton and Phil Sumner.
Landmark assignments have included projects such as the role of review, monitoring and co-ordination of the $300 million Jolimont Area Rail Rationalisation project, project managing the development of schemes for redevelopment of Spencer Street Railway station and third party audit of option studies for the Albury-Wodonga Bypass. Recently we have had significant roles on major mine projects in Queensland, New Caledonia, Papua New Guinea and Iran, a major aluminium smelter expansion in Russia and as the Independent Construction Advisor for the $4.3B Regional Rail Link project.
Flagstaff Hill was a key part of Melbourne’s early infrastructure.
In 1840 a tall timber mast was erected on this prominent landmark, from which flags were flown according to a signalling system recently devised by a Captain Frederick Marryat. It communicated news arriving from Europe and the rest of the world on ships and weather reports between the Williamstown lighthouse and the new town. At noon each day, a black ball was hoisted and dropped to provide the first accurate time signal for Melbourne.
The founders considered this was an appropriate metaphor for a firm which aimed to be a source of wise counsel in the area of infrastructure, mining and projects and which would set new standards in provision of both ‘high level’ and ‘hands on’ advisory services.