Rail freight

25.04.18

Government must commit to investment in rail freight connections to ports

Better connections between English ports could boost the nation’s economy, a new study has shown.

The study of England’s port connectivity found that improved rail links could provide more effective freight journeys between key economic areas and ports, which would in turn boost productivity, provide lower costs and give access to international markets.

Britain’s ports contribute £5.4bn to the economy and extensive government investment is already improving port access, with £235m invested between 2014 and 2019 to improve rail links.

Shipping minister Nusrat Ghani explained that better links would boost imports as well as supporting British companies that export products across the globe.

Alec Don, chair of the British Ports Association said that he was “delighted” that the government has recognised the importance of port connectivity.

“We hope the government will build on this good work, and future infrastructure and investment planning prioritises the free and efficient movement of freight,” he added.

The report offers a series of recommendations for the government, which it is hoped will deliver an ambitious vision for the long term future of port connectivity.

Chair of the UK Major Ports Group, James Cooper, explained that in order to maximise the value of investment in UK ports, they must be well connected to the rest of the country.

Phillippa Edmunds, freight on rail manager at Campaign for Better Transport, welcomed the report, but called on the government to commit to funding.

“This study acknowledges that upgrading the rail freight connections to our ports is critical to providing sustainable efficient freight distribution and identifies key routes which need enhancing.

“This study is all very well, but we now need action the government needs to get on and commit funding to these projects to make them happen,” she said.

Citing research commissioned by Campaign for Better Transport, sponsored by the Department for Transport, she argued that by upgrading the rail routes out of the two largest container ports, Southampton and Felixstowe, 2,000 large HGVs could be removed from the roads each day.

“Targeted rail freight investments work; within a year of the completion of the gauge upgrades on the A34 route out of Southampton, rail’s share of the market increased from 29% to 36%, showing that there is considerable suppressed demand for more rail freight services,” she added.

 

Enjoying RTM? Subscribe here to receive our weekly news updates or click here to receive a copy of the magazine!

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

related

rail technology magazine tv

more videos >

latest rail news

Former Aston Villa chair announced as WMCA HS2 growth delivery chair

21/09/2018Former Aston Villa chair announced as WMCA HS2 growth delivery chair

Steve Hollis has been announced as the new chair of the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) HS2 growth delivery board. A former chairman... more >
Major northern station upgrade reaches phase two of redevelopment

21/09/2018Major northern station upgrade reaches phase two of redevelopment

Plans to improve the Doncaster Railway Station have reached phase two of the redevelopment process. Work has begun on the plans, developed b... more >
Northern unveils new digital train for roll-out at end of year

21/09/2018Northern unveils new digital train for roll-out at end of year

Northern has unveiled its refurbished Class 158 digital train for passengers, ahead of the new fleet’s complete roll-out by the end of the ... 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

The East Coast franchise report tells us what we already knew: it was a bid set up to fail

18/09/2018The East Coast franchise report tells us what we already knew: it was a bid set up to fail

RTM's Jack Donnelly assesses what the Transport Committee's latest report on the VTEC franchise means for the industry as a whole “Even now, there is no concrete plan, nor timescales, for the interim operator of this franchise. From our inquiry, we cannot be sure, and cannot reassure passengers or public, that the arrangements ... more >
read more blog posts from 'the sleeper' >

comment

Northern Powerhouse Rail: The need for change

18/09/2018Northern Powerhouse Rail: The need for change

Northern Powerhouse Rail (NPR) will be transformational for the north – it will change the way people live, work, and play. It will rebalan... more >
Innovation through people and technology

18/09/2018Innovation through people and technology

Ian Prosser, HM chief inspector of railways and director of railway safety at the ORR, picks out the key industry challenges to focus on based on... more >
Why we all must mind the gap

18/09/2018Why we all must mind the gap

Clair Mowbray, chief executive of the National College for High Speed Rail (NCHSR), explains how we can all ensure the UK’s next generation... more >
3D printing: from virtual to real

11/09/20183D printing: from virtual to real

Like so many other technological advancements, 3D printing has moved from being the stuff of science fiction, through niche industrial applicatio... more >

rail industry focus

View all News

interviews

Going global: an interview with Network Rail’s Leevan Finney

29/08/2018Going global: an interview with Network Rail’s Leevan Finney

RTM’s Jack Donnelly sat down with one of the leading minds behind Network Rail’s most advanced and innovative rail maintenance techno... more >