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2020 / 2021 Edition

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DB Schenker helping to build a greener London

DB Schenker rail freight service

Company partners with customer to haul eco-friendly aggregates by rail to the English capital

DB Schenker Rail UK have launched a new freight service running from Burngullow, near St Austell in Cornwall, to London, transporting secondary aggregates from china clay waste on behalf of S.Walsh & Sons.  

The material is a by-product of china clay production generated at Imerys Minerals’ operations in Cornwall. The china clay produced generates 5 to 9 tonnes of waste materials, a significant proportion of which has the potential for use as a secondary aggregate.

Secondary aggregates from china clay waste meets the requirements of sustainable building in the UK and can be used to produce concrete, building blocks and asphalt. Traditionally, much of the granite has remained in Cornwall but the increasing demand for eco-friendly building materials, combined with economic distribution methods, means the secondary aggregate has found a market niche in London and the South East region, where there is a current shortage of locally produced materials.

Over the last 18 months, DB Schenker Rail UK have worked closely with Imerys and S.Walsh & Sons to develop cost-effective and sustainable methods of maximizing the volumes moved by rail. As a result, each train is expected to carry 1,200 tonnes of secondary aggregates to DB Schenker’s rail construction hub n Stratford, near Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

David Fletcher, head of construction sales for DB Schenker Rail UK, said: ‘This is the first time that S.Walsh & Sons has used rail transport and we are delighted to be working with them to transfer the product to London where it can be used by the construction industry. ‘As the leading supplier of rail services to the construction sector this is an exciting and eco-friendly project that we are proud to be part of.’

John Hodkin, business development and services manager for Imerys, added: ‘We are very pleased to be a part of this new initiative, which is very much in line with Imerys’ strategy for focusing on greater sustainability around its operations by reducing the amount of china clay waste sent to tips and increasing the future use of secondary aggregates produced from these by-products.’ 

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