WORK ACCOMMODATES 775-METRE FREIGHT TRAINS
IN MID-FEBRUARY, work was drawing to a close on a two-year project to upgrade freight facilities in Southampton to allow longer container trains and improved operations.
Southampton is a busy port with heavy container flows running north by rail, but the layout was constraining operations. The biggest freight operator at the port is Freightliner, with the company’s Maritime container terminal the principal loading point (some subsidiary flows are handled at the smaller Millbrook terminal). GB Railfreight and DB Cargo container operations are handled at the Western Docks.
Operations at the Maritime terminal involve shunting moves to the nearby Redbridge sidings, but this was a tiresome operation as trains were accessing the main line for a short time to shuttle between the two, with shunters having to contact the signallers at Eastleigh Area Signalling Centre (ASC) many times each day for movement authority.