The Anonymous Widower

Calais – Mediterranean Rail Motorway Bids Called

This title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Railway Gazette.

This is the introductory paragraph.

The government has called for expressions of interest to operate a lorry trailer carrying service between the English Channel port of Calais and the Mediterranean port of Sète south of Montpellier. Submissions are required by May 16.

Further details include.

  • It is aimed to start the service in 2022.
  • Government financial help  ight be available.
  • In French it is called an autoroute ferroviaire.
  • There is also a similar service between Perpignan and Paris.
  • I would expect the service saves carbon emissions.

This certainly seems like a good idea.

I do wonder if we will eventually see trains carrying trucks running between Barking and Sete through the Channel Tunnel.

  • The loading gauge will probably allow it.
  • It would be electrically hauled all the way.
  • Other destinations in Europe would be possible.
  • It might need less drivers, who would only work in the UK or Europe.
  • Would it help with Covid-19 bio-security?

If not Barking, what about to the Freeport being developed at Dagenham by the Thames?

It would



April 9, 2021 - Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , ,


  1. Barking is the more likely choice because it already gets similar services, such as the Transfesa refrig train from Almussafes near Valencia in Spain (one which changes gauge at the Spanish border) and also is/was a terminus for the Belt&Road train from Western China (although I think this service now more commonly terminates at the break in gauge yard near Brest in Poland and tranships from there..had an eBay parcel come that route last year)

    Comment by MilesT | April 10, 2021 | Reply

  2. Sounds good. Should save a day transporting goods across France, although this probably won’t make up for the time lost with all the extra Brexit paperwork.

    NB could not goods from Ireland to the EU use the old TIR carnets? One used to see loads of lorries with this on the M6 prior to the single market.

    Comment by R. Mark Clayton | April 10, 2021 | Reply

    • Now that Ursula has sent a nice message to the Queen, things may get better, but I can see these truck trains all over Europe and why shouldn’t some go through the Chunnel.

      Perhaps those, who advocated turned the old Grand Central route into a freight line were right?

      Comment by AnonW | April 10, 2021 | Reply

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