Network Rail has completed extensive modification and refurbishment to the network at the site of Newhaven Marine Station, developing rail freight capacity and supporting a low-carbon economy by removing the need for heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) on local roads.

The work – carried out in partnership with Brett Aggregates and the Newhaven Port Authority – is a key enabler for the construction industry and will see the area open again after years of inactivity.

Thursday 18 June 2020 saw the first DB cargo freight train and 66113 loco enter the Newhaven Marine Aggregates Terminal. The terminal will serve the busy construction industry, mainly in London, with aggregate sand and gravel.

Transporting freight by rail removes Heavy Goods Vehicle (HGV) traffic not only from the local area, but on major transportation routes across the country. One freight train can carry as much cargo as 76 HGVs, so moving heavy freight by rail is an important element of sustainable transport and reducing environmental impact at both a local and national level.

Shaun King, route director Sussex, said: “The local communities we serve are vital to our success, so I am really proud of our team who worked hard on this important project to ensure the delivery of local benefits. The Newhaven terminal will create jobs, remove vehicles from our roads as well as contribute to our growing rail freight network.”

Andy Saunders, delivery director, Freight and National Passenger Operators (FNPO), said: “The successful completion of the Newhaven terminal is a great example of collaborative working between Network Rail and partners from the freight and construction industries in order to grow the amount of freight our customers can transport by rail.”

Roger Neary, Head of Sales at DB Cargo UK, said: “The construction sector is seen by Government as a key enabler to economic regeneration post-Covid 19, so services like this have an increasingly important role to play in the future of our country.

“We have a long-established relationship with Brett Aggregates and delivering the first train into the newly-refurbished station was a great honour for us. We look forward to working with all those involved to develop further rail freight solutions in the future.”

This work has allowed for the transportation of marine dredged ingredients such as sand and gravel, both important in the making of concrete and other construction materials which will create new job opportunities for the local area as well as supplying the construction sector in London. None of which would be possible without the supply of materials from terminals such as Newhaven Marine.