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Intermodal rail gaining ground in UK

Maritime Transport’s West Midlands terminal in Tamworth is now connected to London Gateway: second phase of Newell & Wright’s Tinsley terminal in South Yorkshire should be ready in August; steel on the rails from Port of Sunderland

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Intermodal rail gaining ground in UK

The new service between Maritime’s Birmingham Internattional Freight Terminal (BIFT) and DP World London Gateway is operated for Maritime by GB Railfreight (GBRf). The new flow runs six days a week from Monday to Saturday with a total transport capacity of 87 TEU each way.


According to BIFT, average truck turnaround time at BIFT today is just 26 minutes.



In South Yorkshire, a new common user intermodal terminal has been created at the former Tinsley marshalling yard in Rotherham. Container haulier and logistics company Newell & Wright Group began operating the eastern part of the yard in May. The Tinsley marshalling yard straddles the metropolitan areas of Rotherham and Sheffield.


Much of the former yard, which could accommodate up to 4,000 rail wagons in its early 1960s "heyday," is now occupied by Sheffield International Rail Freight Terminal, comprising two large rail‐connected warehouses.

The first stage of the new intermodal terminal opened in May and Newell & Wright is handling three train pairs a day, two operating out of Felixstowe (Freightliner and GBRf) and one over London Gateway (GBRf).


First stage work involved laying two (un)loading tracks, resurfacing the storage and truck handling areas and improving road access. All handling is performed by Kalmar reach stackers.


The second phase is due to open in August. According to the company, DB Cargo UK is planning over time to run 10 train pairs a day connecting with main deep sea ports.


Finally, DB Cargo UK has successfully trialled a new service for Italy-based global steel company Marcegaglia, a new-to-rail customer in the UK, transporting almost 3,000 tonnes of steel coil from the Port of Sunderland to its steel logistics centre in Wolverhampton.


Marcegaglia is the largest independent global operator in the steel processing industry and the largest precision tube manufacturer in Great Britain, with facilities in Dudley in the West Midlands and Rotherham in South Yorkshire.


The service, which has run twice during June, removed the need for more than 120 HGV movements, thereby reducing congestion on the UK road network and carbon emissions. The two trains were the first commercial freight trains to be loaded in the Port of Sunderland for more than 20 years, making it an extra special success!


DB’s Head of Sales Roger Neary said: “Marcegaglia is a prestigious addition to DB’s portfolio of customers in the steel sector and further strengthens our reputation as the biggest mover of metal products in the UK.”

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