Rail freight

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...

Scotland pledges to bring down the barriers to rail freight growth

Scotland pledges to bring down the barriers to rail freight growth

22.10.15: The Scottish transport minister has called on businesses across the country and the UK to support Scotland’s government in expanding its rail freight sector. As he launched the Scottish Government’s consultation document, &lsquo...

Three revamped locos sent into service following 10-year Network Rail lease

Three revamped locos sent into service following 10-year Network Rail lease

25.09.15: The first three of a new freight fleet of refurbished 73/9s have entered service following a 10-year lease agreement between GB Railfreight and Network Rail. The new fleet will be used for infrastructure monitoring (hauling trains that moni...

Network Rail halts Ely to Soham freight line plans

Network Rail halts Ely to Soham freight line plans

16.09.15: Network Rail has shelved plans to double a section of track between Ely and Soham until sufficient funding can be identified. The plans are part of the Felixstowe and Nuneaton freight capacity enhancement scheme called F2N. Designers a...

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Dawlish railway may be ‘moved out to sea’ to protect it from storms under new proposals

13/06/2019Dawlish railway may be ‘moved out to sea’ to protect it from storms under new proposals

The storm-battered Dawlish rail line could be “moved out to sea” and away from the “hazard” of the cliffs under new plans... more >
TfL awards contract for new DLR fleet to replace 30-year-old trains

12/06/2019TfL awards contract for new DLR fleet to replace 30-year-old trains

TfL has awarded a contract for 43 new trains to replace the oldest rolling stock on the Docklands Light Railway (DLR), with the first scheduled t... more >
Hitachi trains for Happy trains

10/06/2019Hitachi trains for Happy trains

ScotRail project manager Kirsty Devlin discusses the withdrawal of Class 365s, to be replaced with the brand-new Class 385 fleet. While Scot... 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

Apprentice to Co-leading the Rail Sector Deal

05/06/2019Apprentice to Co-leading the Rail Sector Deal

In a series of Q&A’s with key speakers on the run up to TransCityRail Midlands, we caught up with TransCityRail panellist and Amey’s commercial account director, Anna Delvecchio, for her insight into what the Rail Sector Deal means for the rail industry and its supply chain. Anna started her career as an apprentice at the age o... more >
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Hitachi trains for Happy trains

10/06/2019Hitachi trains for Happy trains

ScotRail project manager Kirsty Devlin discusses the withdrawal of Class 365s, to be replaced with the brand-new Class 385 fleet. While Scot... more >
Malcolm Holmes on new stations for the Black Country

10/06/2019Malcolm Holmes on new stations for the Black Country

Malcolm Holmes, executive director of the West Midlands Rail Executive, described the new stations set to be built for the Black Country region o... more >
The skills bottleneck: Dealing with growing apprenticeship demand

10/06/2019The skills bottleneck: Dealing with growing apprenticeship demand

Richard Turner, head of apprenticeships at Network Rail, details the reasons for growing apprenticeship demand in the rail sector over the coming... more >
A train journey on the Midland Main Line 15 years from now…

10/06/2019A train journey on the Midland Main Line 15 years from now…

Chris Hobson, director of policy and external affairs at the East Midlands Chamber, talks in detail about what travelling through the region will... more >

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Advancing the rail industry with management degree apprenticeships

08/05/2019Advancing the rail industry with management degree apprenticeships

In answering the pressing questions of how current and future generations of managers can provide solutions to high-profile infrastructure projec... more >