Wednesday, 16 November 2011

British Party: Rail Link to Dover Port

Dover Port needs a direct rail link for freight traffic as it becomes clear that the future for freight transport in Britain is by rail.

Carrying Freight by Rail
Carbon emission laws approved in the British Parliament require a substantial reduction in the consumption of fuel used to obtain energy. A gradual increase in the transport of freight by rail would be an important step in order to achieve the commitments laid down by Britain's carbon emission laws. Carrying freight by rail is one of British Party's policies for transport.

The Rail Link to Dover Port
Dover Port holds the key to reducing carbon emissions in Britain and Europe through the introduction of a new rail link. This link would revive the previous rail terminal at Western Docks that was closed in 1994.

The Port of Dover consists of two docks, namely Eastern Docks and Western Docks. All port traffic passing through Dover is directed through the Eastern Docks, including about 8,000 heavy goods vehicles every day. As a result, an enormous quantity of carbon emission is released into the atmosphere, with endless lines of lorries steaming through the town and onwards to their destination in the UK or Europe.

The main Dover to London railway lines pass very close to Western Docks, providing a connection to all British railway stations. The original stretch of track connecting these lines to Western Docks was only several hundred yards long and can be easily reinstated.

Western Docks Train Station
The port's former train station has remained in place, and even the train ferry berth along the pier is still intact. The whole of the Western Docks area is largely unused, and consequently there is plenty of space for the storage of freight containers once the rail link were to be reinstated.

Western Docks is now used only for cruise liners, and as many as three such gigantic ships can dock there simultaneously. In fact there is enough space along the western pier for at least as many rail ferries to dock there at the same time, with only some minor technical alterations to the pier being required in order to allow ferries to unload their freight directly by rail.

When all is taken into account, it becomes clear that the Port of Dover train terminal at Western Docks is largely in place, requiring only some limited work in order to become fully functional as a modern rail link for freight transport between Britain and Europe.

Ecological Revival through Rail
The object of introducing a rail link to the Port of Dover is to spearhead ecological revival in Britain and Europe. The aim is to drastically reduce pollution obtained through carbon emissions and achieve through innovation a port that is friendly to the environment.

Department for Transport Considering Rail Link to Port of Dover
During the Public Consultation on the Dover Harbour Board transfer scheme, the Department for Transport replied to my public proposal for a rail link to the Port of Dover. In their letter to me dated 9 March 2010, the DfT wrote, among other things:
"I note that you have proposed the use of the railway line into the Western Docks for freight to reduce the impact on Dover and the level of carbon emissions and that the ownership of the Port should pass from the current board to either the Dover Town Council or Dover District Council and the introduction of a port-service toll".    

The DfT also wrote in the same letter: "Your comments have been noted and will be included among the representations taken into account when the Secretary of State considers whether, or not, to approve the scheme".

Having publicly campaigned for a rail link to Dover's Western Docks and put forward my proposal with the Department for Transport, who are taking it into consideration, I remain convinced that one day this idea will prevail, as it is in Dover's best interests, and in the best interests of Britain. 

British Party campaigns for a rail link to Dover's Port, to preserve Dover from further pollution coming from road transport. We need to increase transport of freight by rail nationwide, reducing road traffic in general. 

Written by D. Alexander

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