The Labour Party has pledged its support for out-of-hours deliveries, claiming smarter management of the UK road network is one of its transport priorities.

Speaking at a recent All-Party Parliamentary Group for Freight Transport session, shadow freight transport minister Richard Burden MP said: “The Olympic Games showed that through effective co-operation, cities can change freight patterns to achieve significant benefits: minimising congestion; improving reliability; enabling business to avoid disruption; improving safety for vulnerable road users and air quality.”

However, Burden added he knew it might be difficult for some businesses to have the capacity to stay open all night, and appreciated concerns about noise disruption.

“We are pleased that TfL has initiated a programme of extending out-of-hours deliveries with a consortium of London boroughs, major retailers and industry that are working together on new trials,” he said. “The results are expected in 2015 and Labour will be looking at these to consider what can be done in other parts of the country.”

During the session, Burden also set out Labour’s position on longer, heavier trucks.

With regards to the 10-year trial of 1,800 longer semi-trailers up to 15.65m in length, which Labour has previously opposed on safety grounds, he said the evidence emerging indicates no increase in casualty rates and some indications of improved efficiency. “But we believe it is too early to make any long-term conclusions on this. We continue to look at this closely,” he said.

However, Burden reiterated that Labour has no plans to allow “even longer and heavier” HGVs onto UK roads.

  • The Quiet Cities global summit next month at Twickenham Stadium will provide delegates with all the inspiration and information they need to make quiet deliveries work for their businesses. Booking is open now.

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