Freightliner has been named Business of the Year at the ninth annual Rail Freight Group Award, also scooping the award for Environmental Innovation.
The judges said the freight operating company, which this year celebrates its 50th anniversary, was a fine example of â€œwhat it means to be a leading rail freight operator in 2016, demonstrating excellence in technical development, engineering prowess, operational delivery and customer care.â€
More than 120 people from across the rail freight sector attended the informal awards dinner at Shendish Manor, Herts yesterday evening. Paul McMahon, Managing Director, Freight and National Passenger operators was the guest speaker on the night who spoke about championing innovation in the rail freight and recapped on Network Railâ€™s role in what was tough 2015/16 for the sector.
On the night more than Â£1200 was raised for the Railway Benefit Fund in the RFGâ€™s Charity Raffle.
Direct Rail Services won the Customer Care award for its teamâ€™s dedication to making sure goods were delivered and staff were safe during the floods in the north of England last winter. It was a â€œfantastic jobâ€ according to one client, Tesco. DP World Southampton was named runner-up for a range of developments including improved visibility and real-time information for customers.
The Environmental Innovation Award was won by Freightliner for its decision to build new wagons with a significant proportion of recycled materials â€“ â€œan excellent example of what can be achieved through collaboration and creative thinking,â€ said the judges. The runner-up was an â€œexample of true partnershipâ€ between VTG Rail UK and Hope Construction Materials to design and build lighter and quieter wagons with increased payload.
AV Dawson was awarded the Technical Development Award for its state-of-the-art rail connected steel distribution facility â€œwhich provides the perfect heat and humidity conditions for the storage of steel componentsâ€. DP World London Gateway was named runner-up for its TrainGate Portal and Whereâ€™s My Container? app.
The Middlesborough-based firm also won Railfreight Project of the Year for its outstanding steel storage and distribution facility. Judges noted that it was â€œdeeply impressive on all sorts of levelsâ€. The runner-up was Tarmac which invested in a new rail connection to the main line.
The award for Support Service Provider of the Year went to VTG Rail UK for introducing co-location between a wagon leasing company and its customer for the first time, to the benefit of both parties. Bircham Dyson Bell was runner-up for its work ensuring freight is not disadvantaged in plans and proposal for HS2.
This year three people were finalists in the Outstanding Individual Contribution category and juges said they would be proud to have any of them in the in their own organisations. The winner was Sue Gray, Area Production Manager at DB Cargo UK, whose range of skills and personal qualities made her stand out as a â€œrole model leader in the businessâ€.
The joint runners-up were Cameron Taylor, Tescoâ€™s primary Account Manager (Rail) and Martin Saunders, Movements Inspector for Freightliner Heavy Haul.
Tony Berkeley, RFG Chairman, said: â€œOur Awards highlight the success of the rail freight sector and the commitment of all who work in it. It is particularly pleasing to see continued private sector investment despite challenging times. Congratulations to all our winners and runners up.â€
The awards were sponsored by Burges Salmon and GB Railfreight and RFG would like to thank them for their kind support.