British businesses are saving £1bn a year by using rail to transport goods, according to a report the Rail Delivery Group.
And the report, which is based on analysis by KPMG, says there is a further £500 million a year of economic, environmental and social benefits from rail freight reducing the number of lorries on roads.
Peter Maybury, chairman of Freightliner and the RDG freight group, said: “Rail freight has been transformed over the past two decades and is set to keep growing. By continuing to drive efficiency and improve performance, operators could help more than double the size of the sector over the next three decades and increase the economic benefits of rail freight to over £4 billion a year.”
Investment in rail freight has enabled the introduction of more efficient, longer trains which each carry an average of 50 per cent more cargo than ten years ago.
Last year, says the report, more than 7.6million road journeys were saved by transporting goods by rail, the equivalent of around 7,000 HGVs driving from London to Edinburgh every day.