Royal Mail begins construction of second parcel hub

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Construction of Royal Mail’s second parcel hub is now underway in the UK Midlands as the company continues its transformation to a parcels-led business.

Once built, the planned 840,000ft2  hub will be Royal Mail’s largest. Scheduled to be fully operational in 2023, the facility will have the capacity to process over one million mail items per day.

Situated near the Daventry International Rail Freight Interchange (DIRFT), the hub will have excellent transportation links to major cities nearby as well as the warehousing and fulfilment centers of several online retailers. This, says Royal Mail, will enable it to enhance support of the UK’s e-commerce and retail industry.

As well as featuring a state-of-the-art automated parcel sorting system, supplied by Beumer Group, the hub will also encompass a vehicle operating center, fleet workshop facility, brand-new staff facilities as well as a rail terminal, enabling an increase in the amount of mail transported efficiently and sustainably. Construction of the hub is being undertaken by industrial property developer Prologis UK.

Stephan Heessels, divisional director at Beumer Group Logistic Systems, noted, “Royal Mail’s new Midlands hub will be another excellent example of how a parcel distributor can ensure ergonomics-based design of its high-speed sortation systems. The system seamlessly combines system design, operator safety and careful parcel handling.

“The hub will enable Royal Mail to process parcels more efficiently across their network, in turn helping e-commerce companies quickly get their parcels to online customers. The new automation not only means processing more parcels faster, but the modern design of the system also supports workflows to be performed in a safer, more secure way, than ever before. We are proud to have been selected once again to support Royal Mail with positioning themselves at the leading edge of operating efficiency and ergonomics.”

Royal Mail highlights that the design of the hub will maximize the amount of natural light entering the building, saving energy and improving employee well-being. The building will also feature energy-efficient heating, ventilation and LED lighting installations on motion and daylight sensors, ensuring high sustainability standards.

Simon Thompson, Royal Mail CEO, commented, “Our business is accelerating and this state-of-the-art parcel hub in the Midlands will allow us to seize the market opportunity and continue to deliver great service for our customers at 31 million doorsteps up and down the country. I am sure our team are looking forward to the first day of operation as much as I am.”

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Lawrence has been covering engineering subjects – with a focus on motorsport technology – since 2007 and has edited and contributed to a variety of international titles. Currently, he is responsible for content across UKI Media & Events' portfolio of websites while also writing for the company's print titles.

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