Geodis UK has introduced out-of-hours deliveries to 33 more city centre stores in the south of England, following success of a similar operation in Scotland.

The company first began night-time deliveries early 2016 for a large fashion retailer customer with stores in Stirling, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee and Aberdeen.

It rolled out the operation in the UK by drawing on the experience of its French parent company, which already runs an established out-of-hours service across France to meet the needs of  retailers in city centres.

The extension of the service in the South sees night-time deliveries being extended from stores stretching from London to Devon.

Kevin Huskie, sales director at Geodis UK said night-time deliveries offer many advantages to retailers in city centres as they are efficient, quicker, alleviate congestion and frees up store staff to concentrate on customers during the daytime.

“Our drivers deliver direct onto the shop floor so when staff arrive to start the day there’s no mess, no fuss and no distractions later on from day-time deliveries, “ he said.

“The benefits of in-night delivery are clear and we anticipate that many more retailers will switch their operations over to it.”

Geodis said out-of-hours deliveries require careful planning to ensure the goods are safely in the customers’ stores before 7am, so effective route planning and prioritisation are crucial.

In advance of any deliveries, the company liaises with security and store staff in order to make sure its two-person delivery crews know exactly how to enter the building and where to leave the stock.

Crews can unload pallets and remove packaging, leaving goods ready to put out on the shop floor.

Night-time delivery crews can also collect returns, an important factor in fast-moving retail sectors such as fashion.

Pictured: The Bluewater Shopping Centre in Kent is one of the new destinations in the south for the Geodis in-night delivery service.