Categories: a-port-information, Business, UK Major Ports GroupPublished On: 21.05.2021239 words1.2 min read

Commenting on today’s release of the Government’s new rail plan Tim Morris, CEO of the UK Major Ports Group, welcomed the freight aspects of the Williams-Shapps Plan, saying:

“The UK’s major ports are big rail freight users now and have bold ambitions to increase their use, recognising the economic and environmental benefits rail freight growth would bring. We very much welcome the recognition of the role of rail freight in the Williams-Shapps Plan and the core role ports play in the rail freight network. The strategic commitments in the Plan to introducing a statutory duty to promote rail freight and setting a growth target for rail freight in England are particularly good to see. Practically, the commitments to improving track access and fair charging are good to see. There will be a lot of detail to work through, but todays announcement sets a positive course.”

Research done jointly by the UK Major Ports Group and the Rail Freight Group in 2020 identified that there is sufficient demand to double the amount of shipping containers carried by rail, taking hundreds of thousands of HGVs off roads. That potential is currently constrained by capacity and access to that capacity available to rail freight. It is to be hoped that the Williams-Shapps Plan is an important step towards realising this potential. The research report is attached.Intermodal Freight Final Draft (4mb)