Registration open for Freight in the City Birmingham on 1 March

Registrations have now opened for the ‘Freight in the City Spring Summit: Improving the last mile’ on 1 March at Edgbaston Stadium, Birmingham.

This free-to-attend summit will focus on the need to think differently about how cities, businesses and operators approach last-mile deliveries to reduce freight’s impact on urban areas.

You’ll hear from major cities such as Birmingham, Manchester and Southampton about the challenges they’ve faced to mitigate the impact of essential goods deliveries to businesses and residents in urban areas.

These include mandated clean air zones that need to be in place by 2020, as well as a need to reduce conflict between goods vehicles and vulnerable users, and finding ways to tackle congestion on key routes into and around cities.

Leading researcher Laetitia Dablanc will share urban logistics best practice across Europe, complemented by seminars from major operators such as UPS and Meachers Global Logistics on their work to make inner city deliveries more sustainable.

Delegates will also take a look at some of the latest technology and delivery methods emerging to the marketplace, as well as the potential of modal switch to water, rail or bicycle for relieving pressure on the roads network.

There will also be the opportunity to ask questions via a lively panel debate on the challenge of persuading consumers to accept more sustainable methods of receiving their online purchases.

“This really is a must-attend event for local authorities, businesses and freight operators to learn from their peers about more sustainable ways to handle last-mile deliveries, demonstrating how cities and industry have worked collaboratively to ensure freight journeys are cleaner, safer and quieter,” said Hayley Pink, Freight in the City editor.

The spring summit is supported by the Urban Transport Group (UTG) and Transport for West Midlands.

Jonathan Bray, UTG director, said: “Getting last-mile logistics right forms part of a much wider debate about what kind of cities we want to live in and how we want them to look and feel.

“This conference presents a great opportunity to explore innovative solutions that enable last-mile journeys to be completed as safely, unobtrusively and with as little environmental impact as possible.”

  • Reserve your place now and browse through the speakers and exhibitors taking part, or to check out the organisations already signed up to attend.

Freight in the City takes the last-mile debate to Birmingham in March 2017

Save the date for the Freight in the City Spring Summit ‘Improving the last mile’ on 1 March 2017 at Edgbaston Stadium, Birmingham.

This exciting, free-to-attend-event will focus on the latest innovation and operational practices to ensure last-mile freight movements are safe, clean and quiet across urban areas.

An exciting line-up of speakers from both the private and public sector will debate the last-mile challenge and explore some of the successful work already taking place in cities across the UK and mainland Europe to address the issue.

The Urban Transport Group (UTG), which brings together and promotes the interests of Britain’s largest metropolitan areas on transport, will be supporting the event in Birmingham.

Jonathan Bray, UTG director, said: “Urban Transport Group is pleased to be sponsoring ‘Improving the last mile’. Getting last-mile logistics right forms part of a much wider debate about what kind of cities we want to live in and how we want them to look and feel.

“This conference presents a great opportunity to explore innovative solutions that enable last-mile journeys to be completed as safely, unobtrusively and with as little environmental impact as possible.”

Alongside the seminar programme will be an exhibition hall dedicated to the latest equipment and technology to enable compliant, efficient city deliveries.

While outside the venue will be a display of some of the newest urban vehicles on the market.

Details of the speaker programme and exhibitors will be released early in the new year, so make sure you are signed up to receive the latest event updates and our fortnightly round-up of urban transport news.

If you are interested in presenting at the Freight in the City Spring Summit on the topic of clean, safe and quiet last-mile deliveries or servicing, then please contact

We look forward to seeing you there.




London Lorry Control Scheme review will take into account technological advances in HGV design

A wide-ranging review of the London Lorry Control Scheme (LLCS) will take into account technological advances in HGV designs when it decides whether exemptions should be considered.

Following the first steering group meeting to discuss the scope of the review, council representatives agreed that the scheme’s effectiveness, as well as its impact on the freight industry will be included.

A review of this size has not been conducted before during the scheme’s three decades and the aim is for recommendations to be put to London Councils’ (LC) transport and environment committee later in 2017.

An LC spokeswoman said: “It will look at the management of freight, evaluate how the scheme can assist with the reduction of congestion and ensure noise pollution continues to be kept to a minimum in residential areas during unsociable hours.

It will cover routing, signage, hours of operation, extent of restrictions, enforcement, permissions and exemptions, taking into account technological advances in HGV design as well as traffic management and planning techniques.”

The FTA has pointed out that LC is likely to come under pressure from mayor Sadiq Khan, who is keen to resolve the Capital’s air quality issues.

The LC spokeswoman added: “The review will aim to ensure that the scheme continues to provide essential environmental benefits and protection for

Londoners as it has done for more than 30 years and will make sure the scheme plays an integrated role with other existing and emerging freight and environmental management initiatives being led by the boroughs and the Mayor of London.”

TfL Retiming Deliveries Consortium wins ‘noise oscar’ at John Connell Awards

The success of the TfL-led Retiming Deliveries Consortium has been recognised by the Noise Abatement Society (NAS) at its 15th annual John Connell Awards, known as the ‘Noise Oscars’.

An event held last night at the Palace of Westminster saw the consortium pick up the Quiet Cities Collaboration Award for its work in helping shift freight deliveries out of peak times.

The category, which was sponsored by Freight in the City, recognises innovation, best practice and collaboration in sustainable urban deliveries, with a specific focus on minimising noise.

TfL’s Retiming Deliveries Consortium is made up of representatives from the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, Camden Council, London Borough of Richmond upon Thames, London Councils, FTA, RHA, Noise Abatement Society, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, and Ashfords LLP.

It was set up in October 2013 to lead the way for retimed deliveries, promoting and encouraging retiming without noise disturbance through guidance tools, engagement and collaboration.

To date, deliveries to 237 premises have been retimed in London, equating to 80,000 deliveries, across 27 boroughs, working with 25 businesses and 77 consortium sites.

The programme is due to be incorporated in the forthcoming mayor’s transport strategy for London.

Ben Plowden, director of surface strategy and planning at TfL, said: “We’re delighted that the hard work of our partners in the Retiming Consortium has been recognised by this John Connell Award. Deliveries keep a city functioning and by everyone working together we can move some lorries out of peak time – improving the reliability and safety of the roads – while still respecting our neighbourhoods.”

Gloria Elliott, chief executive of NAS, daughter of John Connell, said: “NAS congratulates Transport for London on its Retiming Deliveries Consortium to reduce congestion and emissions without causing noise disturbance to residents. A successful example of collaboration that is effecting substantial positive change in central London.”

Presenting the award was Andy Salter (pictured first left), MD at Freight in the City publisher Road Transport Media, who added: “The winner of this year’s Quiet Cities Collaboration Award has demonstrated what can be achieved by true collaboration across stakeholder groups in the urban logistics sector.

“Only by effective partnerships will business, local authorities and the public make true gains in minimising noise disturbance.”

Food chain Pret A Manger also celebrated at last night’s event by winning the Quiet Logistics Award, which recognises advances in low noise technology in transport to facilitate quieter deliveries and services.

The John Connell Awards are named after NAS founder John Connell, who lobbied the Noise Abatement Act through Parliament in 1960 when noise became a statutory nuisance in the UK for the first time.

Pie Mapping to showcase journey planning and fleet management at Freight in the City Expo

Pie Mapping will be at  Freight in the City Expo on 2 November in London to demonstrate how its fleet management and journey planning software can make deliveries more efficient.

The firm’s Pie Maps, available from next month, provides real-time journey planning to ensure vehicles take the most efficient route while adhering to any weight, time or emissions restrictions that may apply.

Pie for Drivers will be an extension of this. It will be on the market early next year with a companion app to enable drivers to view their particular job details and routes.

Pie Connect, meanwhile, will enable operators to ensure they are able to track the whereabouts and health of their vehicles while out on a job when it is launched next year.

This enables action to be taken in the event of a breakdown or congestion to ensure any delays to deliveries are minimised.

The company is also in the final testing stage of its Pie Fleet 360-degree feet management system, which is also due for launch early next year.

This will integrate all of Pie’s systems and should allow businesses to manage their entire fleet operation, including workforce details, scheduling, drivers’ hours, driving behaviours, vehicle maintenance intervals in one place.

Pie Mapping customers include DPD, DHL and retailer Superdrug.

  • To find out more about these latest real-time routing and management systems, make sure you register today for your free place to attend Freight in the City Expo on 2 November at London’s Alexandra Palace.

London Lorry Control Scheme review will start this month

A review into the future of the London Lorry Control Scheme (LLCS) will start later this month although it will not be completed until next summer.

London Councils said a steering group, made up of representatives from the London boroughs, TfL and the Greater London Authority (GLA), will meet on 24 October to discuss the review’s scope and agree who will sit on the working group.

It is expected that the FTA and RHA and the Noise Abatement Society will be on the working group.

A wholesale review of the LLCS has never been undertaken before and is intended to analyse enforcement, compliance, hours of operation and exemptions to the controversial scheme.

A London Councils spokeswoman said: “A steering group has been established to lead a review of the LLCS and the first meeting will take place on Monday October 24.

“Members of the steering group include representatives from London boroughs, TfL and the GLA.

“The steering group will help determine the scope of the LLCS review and also establish a working group to engage stakeholders affected by the scheme, providing an opportunity for participation.”

She added: “The LLCS review aims to present its findings to London Councils’ transport and environment committee in summer 2017, subject to completion of the review.”

Natalie Chapman, FTA head of policy for London and the south east, said the scheme needed to be “radically reviewed”.

She added: “The difficulty is the scheme has a lot of very local political support. One of the complications is how they get changes to the scheme, but keep local residents happy. It doesn’t give residents the protection they think they have got.”

Teletrac Navman to show latest range of CO2 reduction software at Freight in the City Expo

Teletrac Navman will be at Freight in the City Expo next month to demonstrate how its analytical software can help urban fleets drive down emissions and improve driver behaviour.

Reducing carbon emissions from trucks and vans is a top priority for urban operators, the firm said, with tender documents increasingly requiring firms to have a CO2 policy when bidding for contracts.

It has therefore designed a range of systems to help operators address their fleets’ carbon impact.

Teletrac Navman software can produce regular reports on the CO2 emissions from each fleet vehicle; monitor and help reduce vehicle idling; ensure drivers take the shortest and most effective routes; and provide traffic alerts to allow drivers to avoid congestion hotspots.

“We’ll also be demonstrating how Teletrac Navman’s safety analytics software can provide operators with a range of driver behaviour solutions,” says John Merrill, European business development manager at the firm.

“Integrated camera solutions help to improve driver behaviour, and as front, side and internal monitoring cameras are becoming mandatory in various transport sectors within London, our products can help operators remain compliant whilst mitigating accidents with other road users such as cyclists,” he added.

Teletrac Navman also designs a range of compliance tools for fleet managers to ensure daily check and maintenance schedules are implemented, while its software platform Director enables drivers to receive urgent job details and messages without needing to use their mobile phones.

“Freight in the City represents an excellent platform for Teletrac Navman to engage with potential customers and explain how our range of fleet management solutions can help freight city operators,” said Merrill.


London Lorry Control Scheme to be reviewed

A full scale review of the London Lorry Control Scheme (LLCS) will start shortly, with a possible overhaul of the timings and the vehicles that are currently exempt.

More than 30 years after the scheme came into operation, London Councils said it would review current signage requirements and the excluded route network’s boundaries, as well as “examine the current effectiveness of the scheme, compliance levels and times of operation to establish whether it is as effective as it could be”.

The announcement came as latest figures showed that 4,314 operators and 679 drivers were fined during 2015/16 for breaching the LLCS.

A spokeswoman said: “London Councils still believes that the scheme plays a vital role in controlling the unnecessary movement of vehicles over 18 tonnes on London’s roads during weekends and night times.

“How effective the scheme is and what more needs to be achieved to ensure both greater compliance and enhanced environmental benefits for Londoners will be assessed upon completion of the review.”

Natalie Chapman, FTA head of policy for London and the South East, said London Councils was under mounting pressure to look at scheme, because vehicles had become quieter and there was renewed focus on enabling HGVs to deliver at different times of day.

“There are some unintended consequences,” she added. “Some of the vehicles go on very long detours, so there’s a cost for operators, an increase in fuel consumption and an increase in emissions.

“It has an impact on London’s air quality too, at a time when air quality is a focus.”

Greggs boosts fleet MPG by 11% through ECO Stars membership

Bakery group Greggs has sliced £750,000 off its national fleet running costs since its Scottish division joined the ECO Stars Fleet Recognition Scheme.

The chain’s Edinburgh depot runs 11 refrigerated Euro-6 trucks, which each travel an average 82,876km per year on trunking and store delivery routes across Scotland.

Following recommendations set out in a road map produced by ECO Stars, the Greggs Edinburgh fleet has now achieved the scheme’s top five-star rating and has seen an 11% increase in mpg per vehicle.

Actions included the roll-out of telematics across its entire fleet, as well as focusing on improved driver training, monitoring and targeting to help maintain standards.

Reduced engine idling has also helped to lower fleet emissions through phasing out fridges and in-cab heaters reliant on engine power to operate.

Fridges are now run separately from the main fuel source on red diesel and night heaters have been fitted into each vehicle to reduce the need for idling during cold spells or when the driver is on a break.

Techniques applied at Edinburgh have been applied across Greggs’ national fleet, with overall savings of more than £750,000 due to lower ‘knocks and bumps’ to vehicles, reduced wear and tear and improved MPG.

James McMillan, Greggs of Edinburgh’s transport manager, said: “We are proud to have been awarded the top five-star rating by ECO Stars.

“Having our achievements recognised by this national scheme is very important to us and receiving advice and recommendations to make further improvements will not only help us in Edinburgh, but Greggs nationally,” he added.

ECO Stars is a free-to-join scheme intended to aid operators in lowering their fleet emissions and running costs.


TfL expands retiming deliveries work in the capital

TfL is looking to help businesses in specific areas retime their deliveries this year, as part of its work to promote delivery flexibility.

Up until now much of TfL’s retiming work has been based around single locations.

It is also extending its research into the costs and benefits of quiet equipment, as well as developing quiet delivery training and assessments for drivers, managers and goods receivers.

Speaking at last month’s LoCity event, Jaz Chani, freight project manager at TfL, spoke of the progress made by the Retiming Deliveries Consortium.

The consortium was set up after the London 2012 Olympic Games to explore the long-term potential of out-of-hours trials, which took place during the six-week event and shifted 15% of deliveries out of peak times.

“We carried out trials before, during and after the Games and continue this now, which have demonstrated the benefits to a particular business or site.

“We now aim to demonstrate area-wide impacts [such as air quality benefits] and to multiple different types of businesses, both large and small,” she said.

The consortium comprises TfL, three London Boroughs, London Councils, FTA, RHA, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, the Noise Abatement Society and law firm Ashfords.

It has now created a series of working groups to take the trials forward and expand into other sectors, while also seeking to develop a Memorandum of Understanding and a framework for boroughs to adopt for quiet deliveries.

TfL has set itself a target of retiming 500 sites and 4,000 deliveries in the capital, and has so far reached 144 sites, with a further 13 already being investigated for retiming potential and more than 200 stakeholders engaged with.

Chani said that 30% of all traffic within the Congestion Charging Zone (CCZ) in the morning is freight, with 22% of all freight trips daily within the CCZ taking place between 7am and 10am – a high percentage with a lot of unused capacity at other times.

“We are a 24 hour city and we need to make better use of this,” she added. “We also recognise you can’t retime everything, and that any retiming is done in the right way. There is no point moving steel girders at 3am and expecting everyone to be OK with that.”

Efforts to retime freight deliveries fit closely within three key aims of new London mayor Sadiq Khan’s manifesto commitments, Chani added: improving air quality, ensuring safety and tackling congestion.

  Box: Benefits of retiming sites

  • Martin Browers (pictured), which carries out deliveries for McDonald’s Restaurants, achieved £3,000 in PCN charges from one site alone in London through retiming, and was also able to reduce its national fleet size by 18 vehicles through this approach across its network.
  • DHL achieved a 60% cost reduction by retiming one customer’s site, halving the number of deliveries, which resulted in a 2-tonne reduction in CO2 emissions.
  • A Greater London trial in Sutton saw AS Watson moving forward deliveries to the high street Savers store from 6am, to 5am and eventually 4am with no local complaints received at all during the 12-month trial period. Each journey saw CO2 drop by 6.5%, with journey time down by 18%.
  • The Waitrose store in Fulham gained temporary relaxation of planning conditions to enable out-of-hours deliveries. Moving the delivery by two hours saw no change in background noise or complaints.
  • Tesco has retimed 50 stores within the M25, with a further 300 planner nationwide, while Sainsbury’s carries out 60% of its deliveries outside of peak hours.

TfL has already produced best practice guidance about out-of-of-hours deliveries for all parties, as well as produced a series of case studies and information videos, such as using low-noise roll cages (see below).