Last month, former transport secretary and MP for Hemel Hempstead, Mike Penning, slammed the proposed railfreight terminal for Radlett, near St Albans, saying it would be damaging to road transport operators in the area.

Penning said he wrote to Secretary of State Eric Pickles to express his concerns over the development, claiming he met with local hauliers who were worried the development would attract larger players to the area and “detract from our existing local haulage companies”.

However, when The Hub contacted a number of operators in Radlett, St Albans and Hemel Hempstead to see what their views were, the majority were unaware that plans for a railfreight terminal even existed. The Hub considers it strange that so many local operators have not been made more aware of the plans, especially if the impact will be as big as Penning seems to suggest.

Plans submitted to Hertfordshire County Council suggest the development will create over 3,200 LGV and 7,000 light goods vehicle movements daily, if built. Will this not bring more work into the area for local operators, who are likely to have more local knowledge than the larger logistics firms that Penning believes will set up there?

The plans have not yet been approved, but with such little enthusiasm and knowledge about the proposals from those in the area, is it likely they ever will be?