Hope Construction Materials has unveiled 48 state-of-the-art rail wagons, developed in partnership with VTG Rail UK.
The vehicles were officially launched at an event at the Hope Works cement plant in Hope Valley, Derbyshire, with the ribbon cut by Under Secretary of State for Transport Andrew Jones MP.
The tailor-made wagons, which represent an annual investment of £1 million over a period of 11 years, have been developed with an enhanced capacity, and can each carry 80 tonnes – more than twice the standard payload of 36 tonnes.
This will increase the capacity of each train to 1,850 tonnes of cement, 500 tonnes more than the previous models.
Also in attendance at the opening were local MP Andrew Bingham, the Chairman of the Rail Freight Group Lord Tony Berkeley, representatives from VTG Rail UK and a number of Community Liaison Committee members.
Hope Construction Materials industrial director, Ashley Bryan said: “We are delighted to unveil this project which will result in greater efficiency and sustainability of our rail operations throughout the UK.
“Cement is the lifeblood of UK construction and key to economic development. This new deal will see Hope able to transport bigger payloads in fewer journeys, benefitting both our customers throughout Britain, but also the environment. We look forward to realising the benefits of these state of the art wagons.
“Our cement will be transported by rail to our new Dagenham plant which is set to open in the second quarter of 2016, to then be bagged and sent on to customers throughout Britain, which is something we are particularly excited about.”