UK: On December 9 Secretary of State for Transport Patrick McLoughlin officially opened the new concrete sleeper factory that Trackwork Moll has built in Doncaster to supply infrastructure manager Network Rail over the next 10 years. Employing around 45 staff, the plant will produce around 400 000 concrete sleepers each year.
Trackwork Moll is jointly owned by Trackwork of the UK and Leonhard Moll Betonwerke of Germany.
'This factory is an important part of our strategy to protect and improve our supply chains for essential components on our railways and also to help reduce the cost of our track renewals', said Martin Elwood, Director of Network Rail's National Delivery Service. 'As well as re-introducing competition to the market, our investment in the factory when added to Trackwork Moll's part-automated, modern production methods will all contribute to driving down costs.
'This site in Doncaster is ideal as it is central to the network and already has excellent rail links', he added. 'The on-site laboratory and distribution centre also help to reduce transport costs'.