Norfolk-based haulage and logistics company FreightForce Distribution has opened a new £2.5 million warehouse facility in Great Yarmouth amid growing demand for storage services.

The new warehouse will enable FreightForce to store 5,000 additional pallets – taking its total capacity to over 9,000 pallets. It complements the company’s existing headquarters in Norwich.

“We identified a need to increase our storage capacity to meet customer demands and drive efficiencies through the business and for our customers – and to further provide a total logistics service,” said commercial director Martin Halliday, who founded FreightForce in 1998 with managing director Nick Jolley and former business partner Peter Adams.

“We have seen a trend of our customers favouring third-party storage facilities, which allows FreightForce to cater for all of their requirements from receipt, pick and pack and stock rotation through to despatch.”

The Comet: FreightForce has opened a new £2.5m warehouse in Great YarmouthFreightForce has opened a new £2.5m warehouse in Great Yarmouth (Image: FreightForce)

FreightForce has also become a shareholder member of the Pall-Ex Group, which owns the Pall-Ex and Fortec palletised freight distribution networks.

The company will cover the Norwich and Great Yarmouth postcode areas on behalf of Pall-Ex and Fortec.

Martin said being a shareholder member will allow FreightForce to “have more of a say in how those networks are run, maintaining the highest levels of service that our customers deserve”, while also expanding the range of pallet sizes it can offer to customers.

“We have ambitious plans to grow the business and further develop our services, particularly our palletised freight offering,” he added. “Teaming up with a network that is like-minded will help us to maintain and improve service levels, while also offering customers a greater range of distribution options at a time when businesses require more flexibility than ever.”

It will also allow FreightForce to combine multiple loads being transported across the UK, said managing director Nick Jolley. “FreightForce will take goods to the Pall-Ex hub in Leicester where they will then be transported to local depots throughout the country,” he said. “It helps to offer that economy of scale.”

The Comet: Martin Halliday (left), commercial director at FreightForce, and Barry Byers, UK managing director at Pall-Ex GroupMartin Halliday (left), commercial director at FreightForce, and Barry Byers, UK managing director at Pall-Ex Group (Image: Pall-Ex Group)

Barry Byers, UK managing director at Pall-Ex, said: “We are pleased to welcome FreightForce to our UK pallet networks and to be working with such a well-respected name in logistics.”

FreightForce is predicting £13.5 million turnover for 2022, up from £11.5 million last year. “We’ve been fortunate to see an increase in growth over the last five years,” said Martin. “That’s just been through word-of-mouth recommendations and our reputation for a high-quality service.”

In October 2021, the company launched its own HGV driver training school, FreightTrain, in response to Europe-wide driver shortages.

“FreightTrain-qualified instructors provide training for car and van drivers through to HGV class one,” said Martin. “What sets us apart from other training providers is that FreightTrain can further provide newly-qualified candidates with an experienced driver mentor for real-life coaching, so the end result is a candidate ready for the high demands of our industry.

“FreightTrain also provides transport-related courses, including dangerous goods (ADR), from our classroom in Norwich.”

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