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Government funding for the railways welcome but key rail freight upgrades needed to service the economy, say campaigners

12 October 2017

Philippa Edmunds, Freight on Rail Manager, Campaign for Better Transport, commented on today’s Government funding announcements for the railways between 2019 and 2024.

“Future rail funding for maintenance and renewals is welcome but more commitment on upgrades to the Strategic Rail Freight Network would benefit the economy and help the Government tackle air and carbon dioxide pollution. Rail freight produces up to 15 times less nitrogen dioxide emissions than HGVs for the equivalent journey.

“Every rail freight slot which comes available out of Felixstowe can be filled almost immediately as there is suppressed demand for consumer rail freight services.

“Furthermore, the awarding of affordable freight access charges by the Office of Rail and Road, in the current review, is crucial otherwise trainloads of freight will be transferred back to our road network with all the resulting adverse congestion, pollution and safety impacts.”

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For further information, phone Philippa Edmunds on 020 8241 9982, mobile 07593976548, email philippa@freightonrail.org.uk. website www.freightonrail.org.uk

Notes to editors