Tuesday 27th Sep 2016 - Logistics Manager

TNT trials freight trains for London distribution

TNT Express has trialled bringing freight into London’s Euston station by rail for delivery to stores in the city.

The trial, run in conjunction with Colas Rail, Network Rail and Transport for London, saw a specially-commissioned train carrying tonnes of supplies from Staples and Bristan, arriving into London during the night of 4th/5th June.

The goods were sorted in a special operation on the platform side, then delivered to hundreds of stores/suppliers throughout London by a fleet of waiting electric and zero-emission delivery vehicles.

TNT’s director of operations Simon Harper said: “We are very keen to understand whether, by potentially supplementing our core road network with selected rail services where feasible, we may be able to better support our customers and their businesses with an even faster and more reliable service.”

The trial train originated from Rugby, but TNT’s long-term plan would be to consider developing high-speed, long-distance services from various regional locations, including its largest sorting hub at Kingsbury (Warwickshire), which already has direct access to rail sidings.

The trial is being sponsored by mode shift specialists Intermodality, which has been involved with the European Commission and other stakeholders in a series of projects to encourage greater use of rail and more sustainable city logistics options in moving freight.