IN MARCH 2018 TPN â€“ THE Pallet Network â€“ has opened its third Hub location at Brackmills Industrial Estate, Northampton.
The Brackmills Hub complements the operations of the central Midlands Hub at Sutton Coldfield and the northern regional Hub near Preston. It represents a Â£15m investment in the networkâ€™s future.
The Northampton site will have a capacity of 8,000 pallets a night and will serve 35 member depots, reducing trunking times and costs. Regional Hubs also improve the carbon footprint of pallets because they minimise transport distances, and they cut service times.
TPN MD Mark Duggan says the move comes at an apposite time for TPN which celebrates its 18th birthday this year. â€œI donâ€™t think a network which is already a leader in its sector and will deliver over four million pallets this year can claim to be coming of age, but it is none the less a great time for us to reflect on our position and strategy,â€ he says. â€œWe have built our network on service excellence and as we grow in both pallets numbers and members, adding more Hubs to further refine and protect that service is an important step.â€
The Brackmills site has been refurbished by both the landlord and TPN prior to its opening. It has 164,000 square feet of internal operational space and is secured with CCTV, sprinklers and ANPR access control.
â€œTPNâ€™s USP has always been its quality-led, performance-driven culture, and the new regional Hub not only facilitates future growth and evolvement, it also enables the networkâ€™s Membership to plan with confidence, knowing that quality of service will always remain at the heart of the network,â€ says Duggan.
The Preston Hub opened three years ago and handled 285,000 pallets in 2017, making it the busiest regional Hub in the sector. These pallets all originate and are destined for the North. It is estimated that sending them to Preston instead of the Midlands Hub cuts approximately 200 miles off each pallet journey, or, assuming they are each shipped in fully laden double deckers, over one million HGV miles in 2017.
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