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Commitment and ongoing funding for rail freight in Rail Strategy welcomed by transport campaigners

29 November 2017

Responding to the publication of the Department for Transport’s (DfT) Rail Strategy published today, Philippa Edmunds, Freight on Rail Manager, Campaign for Better Transport said:

“We welcome the ongoing commitment to upgrade the rail freight network in the period 2019 – 2024 as there is considerable suppressed demand for more consumer and construction rail freight services on key corridors. Capacity upgrades will remove a serious number of the large long-distance lorries thereby reducing congestion, road collisions and pollution.”

She added:

“However, as rail freight is a nation-wide service with most of its services crossing regional boundaries, the expansion of integrated regional rail partnerships bringing track and train together, presents challenges. Both the System Operator and Virtual Freight & National Passenger Operator need the necessary authority to protect the rail freight industry. As part of this, the system operator function must oversee the national network and retain timetabling functions.

“Furthermore, we believe that the new structures must be incentivised to support existing and new rail freight services otherwise rail freight traffic could be marginalised.” 

ENDS

For further information please contact Richard Watkins on 020 7566 6494 / 07984 773 468 or richard.watkins@bettertransport.org.uk

Notes to Editors 

  • Read the DfT’s Rail Strategy here – A Strategic Vision for Rail
  • Campaign for Better Transport is the UK's leading authority on sustainable transport. We champion transport solutions that improve people's lives and reduce environmental damage. Our campaigns push innovative, practical policies at local and national levels. Campaign for Better Transport Charitable Trust is a registered charity (1101929).