f people

The DfT is set to reveal its plans for the transport industry in relation to Covid-19, Brexit and the skills shortage at the Freight People’s latest online meeting this month.

Freight People, launched in January this year, is a networking forum for freight professionals founded by Bradford-based driver training company, Freight Train. Its aim is to create a supportive transport forum to debate industry issues and share best practice.

The forum’s latest online meeting, on 21 July, will see Philip Martin, head of the DfT freight policy team, talk about the department’s plans in the light of the pandemic, the UK’s exit from the EU and the industry’s ongoing driver shortage

The meeting will also include a talk from Stephen Jordan, head of the OTC and Transport Regulator for Northern Ireland on how the OTC operates on a day-to-day basis.

The National Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service will also be giving an update on vehicle crime rates.

This is the latest meeting organised by freight professional forum Freight People.

Lesley O’Brien, partner at Freight Train and haulage company, Freightlink Europe, said the forum’s plans to hold regular meetings had been hit by the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic but had successfully switched to online meetings.

She said: “Covid-19 and lockdown meant that, within only a couple of months of the launch, meetings could no longer be held.

“Despite a successful launch, the forum was in jeopardy of folding before it had even begun.

“Freight People turned to Zoom and as a consequence attracted transport professionals from as far afield as Portsmouth and Ireland.”

She added: “When we launched in January, I never dreamed that we would attract people from the far corners of the UK and such expert, informative keynote speakers.”

Presentations have included talks on preventing bridge strikes; fitness to drive; mental health awareness; the impact of IR35 regulations for drivers; and the DVSA Earned Recognition scheme.

Meetings are via Zoom on the third Tuesday of every month from 8am to 10am.

There are no membership fees. Attendance at the first meeting is free and then charged at £10 per forum, which includes refreshments and a light breakfast.

Places can be booked at: