iPort Rail named RFG’s Business of the Year 2020

iPort Rail has won ‘Business of the Year’ at the Rail Freight Groups annual excellence awards event, with judges praising its outstanding vision for the future of the rail freight sector.

Nominated and chosen by the judging panel, iPort Rail had demonstrated how it achieved excellence in customer care, environmental standards and innovation.

Judges said: “iPort Rail has spent years planning and investing heavily to build the first inland rail freight terminal to be open and operational for a decade. Now, as well as attracting six daily intermodal services from around the country, it has also proved that medium-distance rail flows are viable. In fact, this business has actually been instrumental in helping some of the rail freight flows cited in other award entries. The judges were all impressed by this business taking a vision for the future and then doing everything needed to implement it.”

The awards were presented by the event sponsors and presenters on the night John Smith, MD of GB Railfreight (GBRf), and Simon Coppen of Burges Salmon.

Accepting the award on behalf of iPort Rail, Managing Director Steve Freeman said: “Some of the strategic partnerships that we’ve had over the last couple of years have helped us enormously. We’ve all faced some difficult times over the past six months and as we go into 2021 there’s no doubt that they’re going to continue. The challenges that we face are coming from a number of areas however this industry is nothing if not resilient. If we continue to partner and work well together, we will continue to thrive together, winning a bigger share of the UK’s logistics market.”

Maggie Simpson, RFG Director-General, added: “With all the challenges we have had since the start of lockdown in March, it can be hard to forget about things that happened ‘pre-Covid’.  Our Awards offer us a chance to look back at all the positive events and developments that took place in the 12 months up to March, and the very real successes that we were seeing in our industry. And while that may feel a little bittersweet, I think it is those successes that actually stand our sector in a really good place for recovery and renewed growth.  Our resilience, flexibility and adaptability, are the blueprint for our future.”

More than 100 people attended the virtual event, which was the 13th RFG Awards, and on the night nearly £2000 was raised for the Railway Benefit Fund (RBF) through a charity raffle. Congratulations to all the winners on the night.

This year, we were also delighted to welcome award-winning magician Nick Einhorn and his new online magic and mind-reading show Virtual Astonishment. Nick wowed all the guests with his amazing and completely baffling close-up magic, and successfully doing it online was simply incredible.

A huge thank you to Burges Salmon and GB Railfreight for sponsoring the awards, to Burges Salmon for their technical support, to our judges and to Simon Coppen and John Smith for their presenting and longstanding support.


Full winners on the night were:

Customer Care, Runner Up, Hutchison Ports, Felixstowe
Customer Care, Winner DB Cargo and Network Rail
Community & Environmental Responsibility, Runner-Up, PD Ports
Community & Environmental Responsibility, Winner, Direct Rail Services
Innovation and Technical Development, Runner-Up, DB Cargo
Innovation and Technical Development, Winner, Aggregate Industries
Rail Freight Project of the Year
Joint Winner: DC Rail and VTG Rail
Joint Winner: Network Rail and Brett Aggregates
Outstanding Individual Contribution, Hans-Georg Werner, DB Cargo
Young Rail Freight Professional, Runners-Up, Matthew Hurrell, Freightliner and Jordan Lynn, DB Cargo
Young Rail Freight Professional, Winner, Fraser Stirling, Peter D Stirling Ltd
Business of the Year, Winner, iPort Rail.