Rail freight

Transforming rail freight through technology

Transforming rail freight through technology

05.07.16: Rail freight in the UK is changing, with traditional markets such as coal and steel falling significantly and growth coming in new sectors where user expectations are constantly increasing, writes Maggie Simpson, executive director of the Rail F...

Proposals for new West Midlands freight hub open to public consultation

Proposals for new West Midlands freight hub open to public consultation

14.06.16: A new rail freight hub with direct access to the West Coast Main Line could be built near Featherstone in Staffordshire. Consortium Four Ashes are holding consultation events on design plans for the West Midlands Interchange, which will be...

GB Railfreight names last Class 66 locomotive ‘Evening Star’

GB Railfreight names last Class 66 locomotive ‘Evening Star’

11.05.16: GB Railfreight has named the last Class 66 locomotive to be built for the UK and European markets ‘Evening Star’. Locomotive 66779, which has been liveried in lined passenger express ‘brunswick green’, was named afte...

How does freight fit in with rail devolution?

How does freight fit in with rail devolution?

05.04.16: Philippa Edmunds, Freight on Rail manager, Campaign for Better Transport, discusses the recommendations from the Shaw Report and what this means for the freight sector. The nervously awaited Shaw Report, which was buried in the spring Budge...

New Scottish Rail Freight Strategy promises more support and investment in CP6

New Scottish Rail Freight Strategy promises more support and investment in CP6

22.03.16: The Scottish freight industry will receive special support in CP6 following measures laid out in the new Rail Freight Strategy. The strategy, published today, says that the freight industry will provide advice to the Scottish government on...

More rail freight needed for sustainable connectivity in Scotland

More rail freight needed for sustainable connectivity in Scotland

03.03.16: More rail freight is vital for allowing the Scottish government to promote long-term sustainable connectivity, the government’s transport minister has said. Speaking at the Rail Freight Group (RFG) conference in Stirling, Derek Mackay...

DB Schenker Rail to change name to DB Cargo UK

DB Schenker Rail to change name to DB Cargo UK

02.03.16: Freight company DB Schenker Rail UK, which operates Royal Mail services, will become DB Cargo UK from today. The company has operated all Royal Mail services since 2010 and it recently won a five-year contract with building materials compan...

North franchises ‘will not deliver transformational infrastructure’

North franchises ‘will not deliver transformational infrastructure’

26.02.16: The railway across the north needs a “bigger, more expensive, and transformational” solution to fix its historical lack of investment, because what is committed now simply is not enough, rail bosses have said. The leaders of Tra...

Last GB Railfreight Class 66 locomotives arrive in UK

Last GB Railfreight Class 66 locomotives arrive in UK

15.02.16: The last diesel-powered Class 66 locomotives to be operated by GB Railfreight (GBRf) are due to be transported to Doncaster today after arriving in the UK last week. The seven Class 66s (66773-6679), from Electro-Motive Diesel (EMD) in the...

Four major freight operators awarded five-year Tarmac deals

Four major freight operators awarded five-year Tarmac deals

14.01.16: British building materials company Tarmac has awarded four major companies to deliver rail freight services around its new hubs and rail supply routes. Colas Rail, GB Railfreight, Freightliner and DB Schenker have all bagged five-year contr...

East Midlands freight interchange gets green light

East Midlands freight interchange gets green light

14.01.16: The East Midlands Gateway Rail Freight Interchange, planned for a site north of East Midlands Airport in Leicestershire, has been granted development consent by transport minister Robert Goodwill MP. The strategic rail freight interchange (...

Shaw Review must not throw freight baby out with Network Rail bath water

Shaw Review must not throw freight baby out with Network Rail bath water

03.12.15: Philippa Edmunds, manager of Freight on Rail and a member of the Campaign for Better Transport, says a continued centralised ‘system operation’ function within Network Rail is crucial for the freight sector. The industry should...

Amount of rail freight lifted in Q2 slips 18.4%

Amount of rail freight lifted in Q2 slips 18.4%

27.11.15: There was an 18.4% decrease in the amount of freight lifted on the rail network in Q2 of 2015-16, compared to the same quarter last year, according to new figures from the Office of Rail and Road (ORR).  The regulator said the decrease...

Freight derailments: a complex and cross-industry system risk

Freight derailments: a complex and cross-industry system risk

01.11.15: David Stevenson talks to the organisations responsible for managing the UK’s freight derailment risk, to find out what is being done. He spoke to the ORR’s chief inspector, Ian Prosser, and deputy chief inspector, David Keay; acting...

VTG Rail and Mendip Rail sign 130 freight aggregate wagons deal

VTG Rail and Mendip Rail sign 130 freight aggregate wagons deal

23.10.15: Wagon hire and rail logistics firm VTG Rail UK has signed an agreement with independent freight operator Mendip Rail to hire out 130 new aggregate wagons. A mixture of hoppers and boxes, they will be used to move stone from the Aggregate In...

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Stadler announced as preferred bidder to supply 71 new Wales and Borders trains

15/08/2018Stadler announced as preferred bidder to supply 71 new Wales and Borders trains

Swiss rolling stock provider Stadler has been announced as the preferred bidder for a Welsh deal that will provide 71 trains to the lines. T... more >
Rail fares set to rise by 3.2%, Grayling angers unions with calls for lower inflation

15/08/2018Rail fares set to rise by 3.2%, Grayling angers unions with calls for lower inflation

Train fares in the UK will rise 3.2% in January 2019, the government has confirmed – marginally below the expected 3.5%. This increase... more >
Peak District freight sidings get £18m Network Rail boost

14/08/2018Peak District freight sidings get £18m Network Rail boost

An £18m rail investment in the Peak District will come as good news for the construction industry, benefitting the environment, economy and... more >

editor's comment

23/01/2018Out with the old...

Despite a few disappointing policy announcements, especially for the electrification aficionados amongst us, 2017 was, like Darren Caplan writes on page 20, a year generally marked by positive news for the rail industry. We polished off the iconic Ordsall Chord (p32), hit some solid milestones on Thameslink (p40), progressed on ambitious rolling stock orders (p16), and finally started moving forward on HS2 (p14) ‒ paving the way for a New Ye... read more >

last word

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

This summer, Arriva Group's CrossCountry and the Scout Association joined to launch a new partnership to promote rail safety among young people. Chris Leech MBE, business community manager at the... more > more last word articles >

'the sleepers' daily blog

A radical solution to the employment crisis

24/07/2018A radical solution to the employment crisis

Peter Cayless, founder and creative director at Working Eye, talks about an innovative solution to employment in the rail industry that might just help transform careers advice into career discovery. At the 2012 Latitude Festival, comedian Shappi Khorsandi joked that rather than book a clown for their daughter’s birthday party, pare... more >
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Passengers at the heart of Thameslink

31/07/2018Passengers at the heart of Thameslink

As Thameslink launches a new timetable, Richard Freeston-Clough, operations and communications officer at London TravelWatch, looks back at the w... more >
Customers want more rail freight

31/07/2018Customers want more rail freight

Philippa Edmunds, Freight on Rail manager at the Campaign for Better Transport, makes a socioeconomic case for continued investment not only in t... more >
Freight for the Borderlands' untapped potential

31/07/2018Freight for the Borderlands' untapped potential

John Stevenson, MP for Carlisle and the government’s Borderlands Deal Champion, discusses the untapped potential for growth in the Borderla... more >
British manufacturing in buoyant demand for steel

31/07/2018British manufacturing in buoyant demand for steel

Roger Neary, head of logistics sales at DB Cargo UK, discusses the rail freight company’s £6m expansion of its steel warehousing faci... more >

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interviews

Transforming travel in the north west

06/02/2018Transforming travel in the north west

RTM’s Josh Mines talks to Robin Davis, head of new trains at TransPennine Express (TPE), about the huge rolling stock change journey the co... more >