Saturday 1st Oct 2016 - Logistics Manager

Greater clarity needed to exploit HS2 freight benefits, say RFG

The Rail Freight Group (RFG) has welcomed a Second Special Report from the High Speed Rail Bill Select Committee which concluded on the concerns put forward by the RFG about HS2’s approach to rail freight. However Maggie Simpson, RFG’s executive director, said that the RFG now needs clarity on how released capacity will be used.

The RFG argued that the government and HS2 have ‘displayed a lack of ambition and urgency in confirming that use of released capacity on the West Coast Main Line would benefit rail freight’.

The RFG has said that the Committee did not supply a specific recommendation, but that the conclusions find ‘the long investment lead times that will be needed to exploit released capacity persuaded us of the need for greater engagement.’

“HS2 is a vital project for rail freight growth but if we are to deliver the expected benefits for the sector, and the UK economy, we need clarity now on how released capacity will be used,” said Maggie Simpson. “We look forward to progressing discussions with HS2 and Government over coming months to ensure that a suitable framework is established giving the necessary confidence to the sector to support future investment.”