Holidaymakers and business travellers will soon notice a big difference when driving between Scotland and England thanks to funding announced today. Some 260 lorry journeys a week will be cut from Scotland's busy road network in a joint venture between Eddie Stobart Ltd and Tesco.

Eddie Stobart Ltd will receive £200,000 from the Executive's Freight Facilities Grant (FFG) scheme to help move Tesco containers between Coatbridge and Daventry by rail. The Department for Transport (DfT) will also contribute £235,000 to this project. Speaking at the Scottish Rail Freight conference in Stirling, Transport Minister Tavish Scott said: "It is hugely encouraging to see such major players as Tesco and Eddie Stobart Ltd working together to switch heavy freight from road to rail. A joint project such as this rightly has the backing of governments both north and south of the border.

"This devolved government is committed to getting freight off our roads and onto our railways and waterways. Since 1999 our freight grant schemes have helped remove 60 million lorry miles from Scotland's roads.

"With nearly £3 million of environmental benefits over a three year period from this initiative alone, FFG brings real benefits to both the economy and the environment, encouraging businesses to think about their transportation priorities."

The Executive also published guidance today for Regional Transport Partnerships (RTPs) and local authorities on the establishment of Freight Quality Partnerships (FQPs) which aim to deliver goods more effectively in local areas. The Scottish Executive has awarded a Freight Facilities Grant (FFG) of £200,000 to Eddie Stobart Ltd to contribute to the capital cost of purchasing 90 intermodal containers for the movement of Tesco traffic on rail between Daventry and Coatbridge. The containers are directly transferable from lorries onto trains. Awards of FFG are based on the environmental benefits which are generated by transferring freight from road to rail and water. This particular project is expected to generate £3 million of environmental benefits over a 3 year period.

DfT will also provide Company Neutral Revenue Support (CNRS) of £235,130 to Eddie Stobart Ltd. This grant scheme provides revenue support to freight operators for the transport of inter-modal containers by rail rather than road.

Tavish Scott announced on 12 April that all future applications for CNRS in Scotland will be administered by the Executive. The guidance on Freight Quality Partnerships (FQP) to Regional Transport Partnerships (RTPs) and local authorities is available at FQPs bring together local and/or regional transport authorities, business, community and environmental groups and service suppliers to identify key issues, set priorities and formulate appropriate, sustainable solutions for freight transport in any area. The inclusion of community and environmental groups ensures that the decisions made take their interests into account, leading to more sustainable outcomes.


Subscribe to IEMA's newsletters to receive timely articles, expert opinions, event announcements, and much more, directly in your inbox.