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  • Freight opportunities

    We are keen to develop the rail freight market in the UK and provide help and support for your business.

  • Eddie Stobart freight train delivering for Tesco

    Are you considering transporting your goods by rail? Maybe you are considering setting up your own rail freight operation and need a site for a depot, or perhaps you are an existing operator and looking for opportunities to expand. We can help with these or any other rail freight related enquiries.

    For more information or to arrange an informal meeting to discuss your requirements, please contact your regional Senior Route Freight Manager.

    Growth of rail freight in the UK

    Growing concerns about the environment and the increasing need for freight transport over both long and short distances mean that UK rail freight is a buoyant market.

    The national road network is so congested and fuel prices so high that the rail alternative is now being viewed in a fresh light. New markets for coal, intermodal and port traffic are being created across the country with many operators developing new niche markets.

    Traditional bulk commodities form the majority of rail freight shipments with coal, construction materials, metals and industrial minerals comprising of over 50% of the market. You can find out more in our study titled The Value and Importance of Rail Freight.

    Next steps

  • Freight in action

    The DRS freight service for Eddie Stobart at Moy. The train reached Inverness on time while the A9 was closed due to snow. Photo courtesy of Graeme Elgar.

    Roadways Container Logistics' Birmingham International Freight Terminal. We enhanced the loading gauge of the route to the terminal to W10 in 2009.

    Freight for industry - a set of petroleum tanks returning from a Total depot in Nottinghamshire for reloading on Humberside.

    A Freightliner Heavyhaul transporting cement at Earles Sidings in the Peak District, providing sustainable transport near the environmentally sensitive National Park.

    Work to restore the connection to Olive Mount Chord in the heart of Liverpool, improving services to and from the Port of Liverpool.


    A Freightliner Heavyhaul train at Humber International Terminal - the biggest generator of bulk freight in Britian. Photo courtesy of Richard Pinker, Network Rail.

    Serving industry. A train carrying fine quality sand for glassmaking is in position at Barnby Dun, Yorkshire. Photo courtesy of Richard Pinker, Network Rail.

    A DB Schenker train conveys 30 oil tank cars through Doncaster. Network Rail works with operators to maximise train sizes. Photo courtesy of Richard Pinker.

    Daventry to Scotland service for Tesco. Tesco's message takes advantage of rail's environmental credentials: LESS CO2.

    Brigg Line.


    DB Schenker train transporting aggregates for Lafarge.

    DB Schenker intermodal.

    Opening up new markets - Freightliner's Bristol West Depot which became Britain's newest intermodal rail terminal in June 2010.

    GB Railfreight train carrying ballast.

    Birmingham Intermodal Freight Terminal.


    Coal the modern way - A DB Schenker power station train helping to keep our homes warm and lit.

    An intermodal container train carrying consumer goods to the West of England glides smoothly through the World Heritage City of Bath. Photo courtesy of Brian Ringer.

    A DRS train conveying Proctor and Gamble goods from Teesport. This train uses WH Davis’ innovative “lowliner” wagons which are helping to attract new freight business from road to rail. Photo courtesy of Tom Curry.

    Retail freight - a train of Tesco goods by the River Severn en route from Daventry to South Wales

    Investing in freight – one of Freightliner’s modern Powerhaul locomotives which haul bigger, heavier trains making rail freight more productive.