The rail head at Ellesmere Port has re-opened after 20 years of closure.
Peel Ports Mersey and Quality Freight Group have combined to re-open the rail head, and have invested in establishing a receiving area and rail sidings.
There will be a regular twice-weekly service, running every Wednesday and Friday.
The first train to use the new facility brought a load of sand from Sibelco of King’s Lynn destined for Quinn Glass of Elton, Cheshire.
Manchester Ship Canal general manager Dean Hammond said: “Our strategy is to promote choice for our customers, and hence it is vital that the necessary infrastructure is available to effect modal shift where required.
“The Green agenda and increasing fuel costs have made rail attractive, removing congestion from the roads, with the Sibelco load now only having to travel the final five miles to its destination by road.”
Quality Freight Group managing director Sebastian Gardiner, said: “It is also the latest development of our growing relationship with Peel Ports Mersey at Ellesmere Port, and we anticipate a significant increase in new rail volume during 2011 to further enhance the local rail freight network established by Peel to carry coal.”