Britain's most reliable rail freight haulier, First GBRf, on Wednesday 8 July 2009, signed a new multi year contract with Lafarge, which will see aggregates transported to Northamptonshire by rail for the first time.
Present at the signing was Lafarge Aggregates & Concrete UK's Managing Director for Aggregates Robert Whetstone, who officially put pen to paper with John Smith, Manager Director of First GBRf, at Mountsorrel
quarry in Loughborough.
Under the terms of the new deal First GBRf will carry the coarse particulate material from the plant in Leicestershire to Wellingborough, where planning permission has been granted for a new rail facility to be
built. The facility will be added on to Lafarge's existing distribution centre in the town, which currently only has road access.
With long-term plans for significant additional volumes of aggregates to be transported by rail, the new service will save up thousands of lorry journeys a year.
The new contract was signed after a successful year-long trial in which First GBRf was able to demonstrate to the building materials supplier the viability of rail based transportation for this route.
National Rail Manager at Lafarge John Carpenter said: "We are pleased to sign the contract with GBRf and we look forward to a fruitful partnership over the coming years as we seek to move as much material as
possible by rail."
The new contract represents First GBRf's largest direct aggregate contract to date and its length will secure the freight haulier's future in the aggregate market for the long term.
Neil Crossland, Business Development Director at First GBRf said: "At First GBRf we have a good track record in looking at a situation in an innovative way and seeing the possibilities rather than the problems
involved in making the seemingly 'impossible' happen. We are delighted to be working with Lafarge to increase the range of modal options at Wellingborough from just road, to road and rail and to encourage new
traffic onto the rails."
First GBRf will use Class 66 locomotives and discharge trains to carry the construction material on a weekly basis from the site in Quorn.