Feature, Freight News, Rail

GBRf extends trans-European clay contract

[ October 22, 2020   //   ]

GB Railfreight (GBRf) has extended its contract to move kaolin clay from Antwerp through to Irvine, Scotland operated in partnership with LINEAS, the largest private rail freight operator in Europe.

The existing traffic flow will continue for an additional two years until the end of December 2021. The service has so far averaged around 30 trains a year and will continue to run 2-3 times per month.

The trains, which arrive in Calais from the LINEAS Rail operation, will consist of roughly 20 ICA Tank Rail Wagons and will carry 1,200 tonnes per train of the product which is used to whiten paper at the UPM Caledonian Papermill in South West Scotland.

GBRf will normally collect the product on Tuesday nights, run through the Channel Tunnel with electric traction after which a diesel loco hauls the train to UPM Irvine to arrive at around 7pm on Wednesday night. Following unloading, GBRf returns the empty wagons back to the Channel Tunnel by Friday night for a path back to Calais.

Managing director of GB Railfreight, John Smith, said:  “This service will be the longest term of operation for running services through the Channel Tunnel for GBRf, something we are extremely proud of.

“In addition, the shift to rail freight is a vital part of decarbonising our transport system. Our partnership with LINEAS shows our commitment to doing our part to reach the ambitious target of net zero emissions by 2050 and we hope to build on this going forward.”

Senior key account manager at LINEAS Geraldine Leyman, added: “We couldn’t be happier with the service GBRf provide on the UK side and this contract extension is proof of that. We look forward to continuing this successful partnership in the years ahead.”

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