Peel Ports Group has won a major rail industry award for its revitalisation of a rail service connecting the Port of Liverpool with Scotland following a decade-long hiatus.

The Rail Freight Group (RFG) award was won by Peel Ports Group in the Community & Environmental Responsibility category during an annual awards ceremony on Thursday 12 September in Buckinghamshire.

Working with DB Cargo, the UK’s largest freight company, the rail service provides importers and exporters with a seamless gateway to markets via the Port of Liverpool.

After a decrease in UK truck driver numbers and increasing pressures on road haulage, Peel Ports spotted a gap in the market to launch the new service, using its position as a port with access to multiple shipping lines, freight operators and end users to consolidate consignments off the road and on to the track.

Since its launch in May 2018, the regular container rail service, which runs three days per week, has transported c.18,000 containers between the Port of Liverpool and Scotland, resulting in more than 4million road miles saved.

Judges remarked on the proactive steps Peel Ports has taken to consider the local community when planning the operating times of the rail service. This has ensured that noise pollution is minimised to people living and working in the surrounding areas.

Stephen Carr, Group Commercial Director said “We’re delighted to win this award, which in part recognises the substantial effort that has gone into making this new flow a success in little over 12 months of operation; nearly a decade after the last deep-sea container rail service was operated from the port. We are already seeing the increased connectivity increase the flow of containers through the port and that the dedicated rail service further demonstrates the benefits of using the Port of Liverpool for our diverse range of shipping line and cargo owner customers”.

The service has also been supported by Liverpool Metro Mayor Steve Rotherham, who said: “Improving our connectivity, both logistically and digitally, is a key driver in transforming the Liverpool City Region and this new rail freight service is an important part of that process. It also offers an environmentally friendly way of moving cargo arriving in the Port of Liverpool, by taking traffic off the roads.”

Peel Ports is now looking forward to strengthening its rail freight offerings from the Port of Liverpool, with the service demonstrating the potential to increase the number of daily rail services to serve other markets and destinations.

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