Rail freight

Rail freight movement at record high in 2014

Rail freight movement at record high in 2014

23.05.14: Rail freight movement in the UK has peaked this year with more than 22.7 billion net tonne kilometres moved in 2013-14, an increase of some 6% over the previous year, according to data from the Office of Rail Regulation (ORR). Having previo...

Rail freight delivering economic benefits to UK – RDG

Rail freight delivering economic benefits to UK – RDG

15.05.14: It is estimated that UK businesses are saving £1bn a year by using rail freight to transport goods, following a significant period of industry investment, a new Rail Delivery Group (RDG) report has revealed.  Based on analysis ca...

GB Railfreight invests in innovative Ecofret wagons

GB Railfreight invests in innovative Ecofret wagons

09.05.14: GB Railfreight (GBRf) has secured a five-year lease with VTG Rail UK Ltd for 18 of its new Ecofret triple-platform wagons.  But John Smith, managing director of GBRf, said that the government must do more to support the changing freigh...

Increasing rail freight’s modal share

Increasing rail freight’s modal share

01.05.14: Philippa Edmunds, manager of Freight on Rail, explains the growth of rail freight in the UK and how this can be further boosted. Rail freight is vital to the UK economy. As the transport minister Baroness Kramer said: “The rail freight...

Freight industry celebrates as first train tested on Ipswich Chord

Freight industry celebrates as first train tested on Ipswich Chord

25.03.14: GB Railfreight has tested the first freight train on the Ipswich Chord, which is due to open commercially on 31 March. The chord forms an important part of Network Rail’s strategic freight network – a programme of investment to...

New Ipswich Chord to increase UK freight capacity

New Ipswich Chord to increase UK freight capacity

24.03.14: The new £59m Ipswich Chord is set to increase capacity for freight trains and ease a major bottleneck affecting passenger services on the Great Eastern Main Line (GEML). Built on the site of the former Harris bacon factory, the new li...

Freight challenges set out to 2035 by CILT

Freight challenges set out to 2035 by CILT

14.02.14: Strategic national direction is needed to meet challenges facing the future growth of the UK’s logistics capability, the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) has urged. A new report, UK Freight Planning to 2035, exami...

NDS fleet haulage services awarded

NDS fleet haulage services awarded

06.02.14: Five suppliers have been awarded contracts to provide haulage for Network Rail’s National Delivery Service (NDS). DB Schenker, Freightliner Heavy Haul, GBRf, Direct Rail Services and Colas Rail will provide locomotives and drivers for...

£90m haulage contract for Colas Rail

£90m haulage contract for Colas Rail

31.01.14: Network Rail and Colas Rail have signed a £90m freight haulage contract. Colas Rail will provide haulage for daily network services and passenger services, mainly for the Western and Southern regions. Services to the Eastern and North...

Crossrail contract extension for GBRf

Crossrail contract extension for GBRf

28.11.13: GB Railfreight (GBRf) has won a contract extension to shift excavated material from Crossrail tunnels. The contract is with BFK working with Costain/SkansaJV and will run until November 2014. It covers services from Willesden Euro terminal...

Rail Freight Alliance launched

Rail Freight Alliance launched

01.11.13: A new group has been formed with the five major freight operating companies and Network Rail to deliver sustainable improvements for the sector. The Rail Freight Alliance has been endorsed by the Rail Delivery Group, with a new framework an...

Second freight derailment reported

Second freight derailment reported

16.10.13: Days of delays are expected after a freight train derailed last night in Gloucester.  An empty container came off the wagon as the train was travelling on the Lydney-Gloucester line, but no-one was injured. Replacement bus services are...

Freight traffic up by 3.7% – ORR

Freight traffic up by 3.7% – ORR

04.10.13: The amount of freight moved has increased by 3.7% this year, new statistics from the ORR show. In 2013-14 Q1 freight was moved to a total of 5.7bn net tonne kilometres. The report, Research findings on freight, also showed that freight dela...

Eight new Class 66 locos for GBRf

Eight new Class 66 locos for GBRf

04.09.13: GB Railfreight has signed a deal for eight new Class 66 locomotives with Electro-Motive Diesel Inc. The rolling stock will be delivered in August 2014 and will be used on biomass and infrastructure Railfreight haulage. John Smith, managing...

GB Railfreight calls for integrated electrification

GB Railfreight calls for integrated electrification

02.07.13: The UK must develop an aligned electrification investment strategy for rail and freight, GB Railfreight has urged. In evidence to the Transport Select Committee on its inquiry into ‘Access to Ports’, GB Railfreight calls for one...

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Potential Leicester to Coventry rail link mulled over in updated Leicestershire transport vision

22/02/2019Potential Leicester to Coventry rail link mulled over in updated Leicestershire transport vision

The potential of a Leicester to Coventry rail link has been revived again as one of the key highlights of a new transport masterplan outlined by ... more >
Queues of 15,000 and Eurostar chaos at St Pancras in no-deal Brexit

22/02/2019Queues of 15,000 and Eurostar chaos at St Pancras in no-deal Brexit

Eurostar queues of up to 15,000 passengers could mount up at London’s St Pancras International station in the event of a no-deal Brexit, ac... more >
New head of safety and environment for Hull Trains announced

21/02/2019New head of safety and environment for Hull Trains announced

A new head of safety and environment has been announced by Hull Trains, with Mark Shepherd due to replace Phil Green in the role. Bringing m... 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

Williams Rail Review: The end of saying sorry?

05/02/2019Williams Rail Review: The end of saying sorry?

Keith Williams’ ongoing Rail Review presents a golden opportunity to rebuild the industry’s weakened relationship with its users and set it on a better track for the future, argues David Sidebottom, passenger director at Transport Focus. Passengers waiting at stations today are not peering down the line looking for a strategy ... more >
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TrackWater: Embracing data in flood prevention

05/02/2019TrackWater: Embracing data in flood prevention

Mike Harding, from Lancaster University’s Data Science Institute, introduces us to TrackWater: an innovative project between Lancaster Univ... more >
High-speed rail cannot stand in isolation

05/02/2019High-speed rail cannot stand in isolation

Last year, the Scottish Government announced two feasibility studies to better understand the economic and environmental implications of options ... more >
Flying Banana reaps the fruit of its labour

05/02/2019Flying Banana reaps the fruit of its labour

Steve Quinby, Network Rail’s head of data collection, gives us the rundown on the state-of-the-art ‘Flying Banana’ train. ... more >
Introducing the new Passenger Assist app

05/02/2019Introducing the new Passenger Assist app

Jacqueline Starr, managing director of customer experience at the Rail Delivery Group, explains how a new app developed for the rail industry wil... more >

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TfN Strategic Transport Plan: not just for transport's sake

22/01/2019TfN Strategic Transport Plan: not just for transport's sake

Peter Molyneux, Transport for the North’s (TfN’s) strategic roads director, has been leading on the development of the seven economic... more >