Shipley Transport Services relies on Volvo to upgrade its fleet

Bradford-based Shipley Transport Services has extended its relationship with Volvo Trucks after taking delivery of four new ultra-fuel-efficient Volvo FH with I-Save tractor units, each specified with a premium Globetrotter XL cab.

Supplied by Crossroads Truck and Bus Area Sales Manager, Jason Robinson, the four new 460 hp FH with I-Save 6x2s join a 50-strong fleet, made up predominantly of Volvos.

Each new truck benefits from Volvo’s proven D13TC turbo-compound engine, which produces up to 300 Nm of extra torque – meaning less acceleration and fuel is needed to keep a steady speed.

“We’ve been buying Volvos for more than 20 years, because we’ve always been pleased with the quality and reliability of the product,” says David Clarke, Managing Director at Shipley Transport Services. “This is our first time trying the I-Save model and we’re excited to see how well it performs both on the road, and at the pumps. We’ve heard good things, so we wanted to give it a go for ourselves.

“The service we get from Volvo’s dealer network is always first class. If we ever have a problem, they go above and beyond to sort it out. You can’t ask for more than that.”

All FH with I-Save models benefit from Volvo’s long haul fuel package, together with its map-based I-See system which uses knowledge about the road ahead to utilise the truck’s kinetic energy in the best possible way.

Each new vehicle has been specified with a single bunk, luxury heated driver’s seat, 33-litre under-bunk mounted fridge / freezer, microwave prep kit, and audio and media package, including DAB radio and 7” touchscreen. The vehicles also come with Volvo’s Drive+ package, which adds additional features to make life on the road easier for the firm’s hard-working team.

“Driver satisfaction is absolutely paramount for us, so we spec our vehicles with maximum comfort in mind. They absolutely love the FH and always comment on it being the best truck to drive.”

Supplied on a six-year contract through Volvo Financial Services, the FHs will be in operation five days a week and are expected to cover roughly 140,000km per year. They will be used for general haulage nationwide and replace older models within the company’s fleet.

Established in 1980, Shipley Transport Services is a family-owned haulier specialising in full loads, part loads and pallets.

Logistics firm expects the best after going back to Volvo

Bradford-based Expect Distribution has returned to Volvo Trucks – adding six new FH 6×2 tractor units to its busy fleet, having been impressed with the fuel consumption of a demonstrator vehicle.

The business hasn’t run Volvos in more than a decade but has gone back to the Swedish marque, after it beat off the challenge of four rival manufacturers for this latest order.

Andy Taylor, Director of Transport at Expect Distribution, says: “It is great to have reignited our previous relationship with Volvo. The vehicles come with some strong claims relating to fuel and uptime and that was backed up by the demonstrator. Now we are looking forward to putting them through their paces in our busy operation.”

Supplied by Iain Cass, Area Sales Manager, Crossroads Truck and Bus, the six FHs all feature Globetrotter cabs, and are powered by Volvo’s D13K engine producing 500 hp and 2,500 Nm of torque for great pulling power and a fuel-efficient, comfortable driving experience.

They will be double shifted, working five to six days a week on a variety of long distance, trunking and multi-drop work. They are expected to cover roughly 140,000 km per year.

The new trucks are built with Volvo’s 12-speed I-Shift automated gearbox complete with long haul fuel package, plus I-See predictive cruise control. The Globetrotter cabs benefit from a single bed living package, a 33-litre under bunk mounted fridge and enhanced interior finish.

“These new vehicles are all highly spec’d in line with our aims to provide the best suited equipment that we can to our drivers,” adds Taylor. “The feedback we’ve had already has been great. The drivers have been absolutely delighted with them and have already started to ask when we are getting some more!”

Supplied on a contract hire agreement with Volvo Financial Services, which incorporates a Volvo Gold Contract repair and maintenance package, to guarantee maximum uptime, the FHs are a mixture of replacements and fleet additions and join Expect Distribution’s 140-strong fleet.

All servicing and maintenance work will be done at Crossroads Truck and Bus in Birstall.

Expect Distribution is a family-run business that has been in operation for more than 30 years. Today the company employs around 300 people, offering services and expertise in the warehousing, contract logistics and palletised distribution sectors. It was named Haulier of the Year at the 2020 Motor Transport Awards.

New FL rigid is the first Volvo to land at Russell Stone Merchants

Bradford-based business Russell Stone Merchants has taken delivery of its first ever Volvo truck, replacing a rival manufacturer with a new crane-equipped 4×2 Volvo FL rigid.

The 18-tonne vehicle has gone into service to help the firm keep up with growing demand in the busy building trade.

“We had our old truck for 12 years and it never let us down, but there’s no doubt this is a step up,” says Paul Jackson, Technical Director at Russell Stone Merchants. “As it’s our only truck, it was absolutely vital we got the decision right. We looked closely at four different manufacturers and did our research. The overriding feedback was that Volvo was the best product and could give us the mileage and payload we needed to do the job.”

Supplied by Jason Robinson, Area Sales Manager at Crossroads Truck and Bus, the FL is powered by Volvo’s D8K engine, producing 250 hp and 950 Nm of torque. It features a six-speed I-Sync automated transmission, and steel suspension.

The truck’s cab benefits from the Drive Package – including air conditioning, cruise control and an electric roof hatch – for an enhanced driver workspace, as well as roof mounted amber beacons.

It has been fitted with lightweight dropside bodywork by Micra Truck Bodies, plus an Atlas 105.2 crane to allow the company to easily load and deliver its stone supplies to construction sites.

“We go up as far as Berwick maybe once every couple of weeks, but the majority of the work is closer to home,” says Jackson. “Business is very busy at the moment and most days the truck will go out at its full capacity.

“We put the crane on the back of the truck, which gives us a bit more length to get the pallets on, and we specified a lightweight body, to maximise payload potential.”

The FL is covered by a Volvo Gold Contract repair & maintenance agreement, which guarantees the best possible uptime, with servicing being carried out at Crossroads Truck and Bus’ Birstall depot.

“The service we got from Jason and the team at Crossroads was second to none,” adds Jackson. “The driver absolutely loves the truck. It’s looking like an excellent choice so far and in the long run we’re confident the investment will prove great value for money.”

Established in the early 1970s, Russell Stone Merchants supplies and delivers all types of high-quality stone to house developers, builders and builder’s merchants.

New Volvos sail into service with DFDS

International shipping and logistics specialist DFDS is increasing the share of Volvo trucks in its fleet with the delivery of 27 new FH Globetrotter tractor units, each specified with Volvo’s intelligent I-See predictive cruise control that analyses and adapts to gradients ahead for maximum fuel saving.

The new trucks replace a mixture of competitor brands and will be split between three sites; with 12 FH 460s moving freight into and out of the Port of Immingham, and 15 FH 500s divided between depots in Larkhall and Aberdeen. From there they will operate with temperature-controlled trailers moving seafood to major UK fish markets, as well as to Heathrow for export, and for direct delivery onto the continent.

Anthony Patterson, Fleet Manager, DFDS, says: “We are a major supplier of logistics services to Volvo Group, and heavily involved in what goes into and comes out of the factories in both Gothenburg and Ghent. That puts us in a unique position where we get to deliver our own trucks from the factory to the UK, but one where Volvo also secured the order entirely on merit.

“We couldn’t afford for anything less; we work our trucks intensely, 24/7, and product quality and reliability are paramount. We also get excellent driver feedback on the FHs, plus the service from the Volvo Trucks dealer network is consistently strong. It doesn’t matter where one of our trucks is, we get really well looked after.”

The new 6×2 tractor units join a fleet of 650 trucks operating across Europe and Russia, with these latest additions supplied by Abdi Ali, National Key Account Manager at Volvo Trucks UK & Ireland. PDIs were completed by Crossroads Truck and Bus in Stallingborough.

Power is provided by Volvo’s efficient D13K, Euro-6, Step D diesel engines, producing either 460 or 500 hp, and operated through 12-speed I-Shift automated gearboxes – designed to make driving easier, safer and more comfortable.

The new arrivals are backed by a three-year Volvo Gold Contract, which guarantees the best possible uptime, using the vehicles’ on-board telematics to ensure trucks are only called in for maintenance when they need it. Volvo’s top tier R&M contract also provides the reassurance of a replacement truck or financial compensation in the event a time-consuming repair is ever required.

DFDS has also taken a three-year subscription to Volvo Connect for each new truck, providing access to a host of digital and connected services via a user-friendly portal.

“Volvo Connect puts a lot of powerful information at our fingertips, from vehicle tracking to fuel and safety reporting. Plus, simple things like being able to download tachograph data remotely saves a lot of time and hassle,” concludes Patterson.

Fuel efficiency and driver comfort see Culina Group return to Volvo for major new truck order

Culina Group has taken delivery of 134 new Volvo FH 460 6×2 tractor units after a trial highlighted their excellent fuel-saving performance, coupled with the impressive driver comfort from the spacious Globetrotter cabs.

The new trucks join the 3PL’s extensive fleet of 2,400 commercial vehicles, delivering food and drink products across the UK for a wide range of Culina Group’s blue-chip customers.

Mark Matkin, Fleet Director of Culina Group, says: “We opted for Volvo after comparing the FH closely against equivalent vehicles from most of the other major manufacturers. As well as being the most competitive on fuel, the Globetrotter cab scored highly for driver comfort; plus with Volvo we get the peace of mind of a dealer network which goes above and beyond to look after us.”

Supplied by Hartshorne Motor Services, the new FHs are powered by Volvo’s D13K engine, offering excellent driveability and producing up to 460 hp and 2,300 Nm of torque. The trucks come equipped with Volvo’s Dynafleet telematics system and all benefit from Volvo’s long-haul fuel package.

“We have changed from 500 hp to 460 hp for this order,” explains Matkin, who worked with the team at Hartshorne to carefully specify the trucks to maximise fuel efficiency. “We have also gone for a medium height chassis and removed the external sun visor to further improve the aerodynamics.

“All these points add up to the new FHs being incredibly fuel efficient – helping us get the most out of every single drop of diesel, which will reduce our fuel costs and environmental footprint.”

The interior of the Globetrotter cabs feature Drive Plus and Single Bed Living packages, plus full leather seats, fridge and media package with satellite navigation.

“The drivers love them,” says Matkin. “The Volvo cabs are always very popular, but these have been enhanced further with the premium upgrades that Hartshorne added for us.”

The new trucks were supplied on a Volvo Financial Services operating lease and are covered by a Volvo Gold Contract repair & maintenance agreement, which guarantees the best possible uptime and includes full access to the manufacturer’s UK-wide dealer network.

In operation seven days a week, working a variety of shift patterns, the trucks will clock up anywhere from 150,000 – 260,000 km per annum and are expected to stay in service for three years.

Culina Group is a major ambient and chilled food and drink 3PL specialist, providing warehousing, distribution, contract packing and a bonded division with extensive expertise in relation to dutiable goods across the UK and Ireland.

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Jennifer Stephenson

25 Years not out!

TECHNICIAN Steve Hunter is among 100 people who have all received a long service award for 25 years at commercial vehicle distributors Crossroads Truck & Bus and Hartshorne Group.

Steve, who lives in Harthill, Sheffield was presented with his award by cricket hero Matthew Hoggard MBE at a prestigious event at Trent Bridge cricket ground in Nottingham.

The HGV technician, who is based at the Crossroads depot in Rotherham, said: “Crossroads has always been a fun place to work, where everyone gets on together to get the job done. It’s the camaraderie with the people you work with, and the relationships with customers, that make it special.”

Over 60 people attended the milestone celebration, all of who had completed 25 years or more service with either Crossroads Truck & Bus or the Hartshorne Group. Both companies are distributors of commercial vehicles on behalf of Volvo Truck & Bus.

Every guest at the event signed their name on a timeline wall that traced the history of when the companies were founded back in 1968 (Hartshorne Group) and 1956 (Crossroads Truck & Bus).

Hartshorne Group and Crossroads Truck & Bus Managing Director Martin Cronin co-presented the awards with Matthew Hoggard.

Mr Cronin told Steve and his colleagues: “It’s down to your passion, care, friendship and perseverance that we have a fantastic business of which we can all be proud.”

Steve, 60, is married to wife Julie and has three children.

– ENDS –

Notes for Editors :

Photo 1A shows Steve Hunter (centre) receiving the company’s 25 year service award, Matthew Hoggard MBE (Former England cricketer – left) and Martin Cronin (Managing Director – right).

Family haulage company upgrades fleet with seven new Volvo Trucks

FAMILY-RUN road haulage company Steve Benton Transport has upgraded its commercial fleet with a keen eye on road safety and the environment.

Founder Steve Benton – who started the business over 25 years ago with a single desk and one truck – has taken delivery of seven new Volvo FH vehicles to replace older models in his fleet of 70.

The company says safety and environmental factors were among key considerations in selecting the new trucks, which were supplied by the Dan Byworth from the Hartshorne Group in Birmingham.

Steve said: “We pride ourselves on running an impressive fleet and we’ve partnered with Hartshorne on that basis for decades”.

The new trucks are fitted with the latest Volvo I-See technology and long haul fuel package. Volvo I-See is a forward thinking predictive cruise control system that plans or “looks” at the journey ahead. Selecting cruise control, I-See uses stored topographic cloud and map based GPS data, efficiently supporting the truck up hill and down dale.

“Besides returning good fuel figures, I am also impressed with the lane-change technology, which enhances road safety”, states Steve.

Steve Benton Transport has depots in Birmingham, Nottingham and Market Rasen, employing almost 100 people. Steve’s wife Jackie and their family have helped to build the business over the years. The company distributes across the UK and in Europe, transporting a wide range of goods.

Hartshorne Managing Director Ian Middleton said: “We’re proud to partner with Steve and his team. They are amongst our many long-standing customers in the region and it is always a pleasure to work with them.”

Steve says the amazing growth of the business from being a single truck operation is down to three factors: hard work, luck, and great staff.

He explained: “You obviously need hard-work but you also need a little bit of luck. In my case, I’ve been blessed with a fantastic team, some of whom have been with me for 20 years or more.”

Earlier this year, Volvo presented Steve with an award for his contribution to the sector. He is pictured receiving it from Robert Grozdanovski (Managing Director, Volvo Trucks UK & Ireland) and Heléne Mellquist (President, Volvo Trucks Europe).

Volvo chosen for Atkins LGV Training’s first new trucks

Atkins LGV Training has put its first new trucks on the road, adding four Volvo FLs to its mixed fleet of commercial vehicles.

The Bradford-based driving school is hoping the 18-tonne FLs will help push the business forward after re-opening its doors following an enforced closure due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Supplied by Phil Atkinson, Area Sales Manager at Crossroads Truck and Bus in Birstall, the four new FL rigids are fitted with Micra 26ft curtainside bodies and are powered Volvo’s latest Euro 6 D8K engine, producing up to 250 hp and 950 Nm of torque.

The vehicles will be used to help Atkins’ customers work towards their Class 2 / C licence.

“This is the first time we have bought our own brand-new trucks,” explains Sonia Atkin, Director at Atkins LGV Training. “In the past we have leased our vehicles or bought used vehicles. But, having looked at the finances and considered all our options we decided we wanted to add these new Volvos to the fleet.

“We opted for Volvo over the other manufacturers as they are a well-respected brand, and one drivers aspire to get behind the wheel of. It’s hard to beat them in terms of value for money, reliability, service and fuel efficiency.

“This is a big investment for us, but we are sure it will help the company in the long run. We want to give our customers the very best trucks to learn in.”

The four trucks are covered by a Volvo Gold Contract repair & maintenance agreement, offering Atkins LGV Training the best possible uptime from their new vehicles. The FLs will be used seven days a week and are expected to clock up roughly 40,000km a year.

The Volvo FL’s automated 6-speed I-Sync transmission offers Atkins’ learners a smooth drive, helping to simplify negotiating city roads, while lowering fuel consumption and climate-impacting emissions. An air suspended driver’s seat with adjustable shock absorber, lumbar support and heating adds to the comfort of the ride and an additional kerbside window on the passenger door maximises visibility and safety.

“The feedback we’ve had from the drivers has been fantastic,” says Atkin. “They absolutely love taking them out. Like many other businesses, we had to close our doors completely due to the coronavirus, but we’re back open now. We’re hoping these new trucks will give us a real boost as we get back on our feet.”

Atkins LGV Training has been in operation for more than 30 years. The family-run firm provides driver training for heavy goods vehicles (HGV), passenger carrying vehicles (PCV), certificate of professional competence (CPC), car and trailer (B+E) and minibus licences.

Ernest Cooper Ltd celebrates its centenary in style

To mark 100 years in business, Ernest Cooper Ltd has invested in a bespoke Volvo FH16 750 gold coloured tractor unit. The new flagship will also help raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support this year.

Supplied by Gareth Stone, Area Sales Manager at Crossroads Truck and Bus Ltd., no expense has been spared on the FH16, which is powered by Volvo’s D16K engine that boasts 750bhp and 3,550Nm of torque. The engine is coupled to a 12-speed I-Shift gearbox and other highlights include Volvo Dynamic Steering, two large stainless steel vertical exhausts from TruckMax and unique side skirts from S&B Components. The truck runs with a Wilcox trailer, which – like the tractor unit – has been painted gold.

The company was founded in 1919 when Ernest Cooper and his brother George started hauling axle units for trains from Leeds to London. They soon got into the tipper market, but the two brothers split in 1965 and Ernest went alone with his sons to carry on what is now Ernest Cooper Ltd. The business now has the fourth generation of the family on the books and runs 60 of its own vehicles (all Volvos) and around 60 tractor units for permanent sub-contractors.

Director and Ernest’s grandson, Lee Cooper believes it was important to recognise 100 years as a transport operator with a special vehicle, saying “It’s not the type of occasion that comes around every day, so we wanted to make sure it had everything on the truck that it could have.”

Lee continues, “It’s been airbrushed with a picture of my mother, who passed away from cancer eight years ago. We have also gone into partnership with Macmillan Cancer Support and there are graphics from the charity on the truck too.”

The graphics represent a wider collaboration between Ernest Cooper and the charity, as the truck will be raising money while it works.

“When it enters service, whatever the FH16 earns during the year, we’ll donate to the charity,” explains Lee. “It will be used in exactly the same way as any of the other vehicles, which means going to all of the same quarries and customers as our other vehicles, but any profit from the gold FH16 will go straight to Macmillan.”

The truck officially entered service on 16th June, having been formally unveiled to the business at a party in April.

“Only a few people in the company knew about it – I wanted it to be a surprise,” Lee reveals. “I was driving it around at night to make sure no-one saw me! We’re very pleased with the outcome and look forward to raising lots of money for charity over the coming year.”

Volvo takes root at Braegate Produce with crisp new FH tractor

Potato supplier Braegate Produce has put its first Volvo into service. The FH Globetrotter 6×2 pusher axle tractor unit replaces a rival manufacturer’s truck in a seven-strong fleet.

Supplied by Crossroads Truck and Bus, the new vehicle is powered by the latest D13K Euro 6, Step D engine, producing 500 hp and 2,500 Nm of torque for great pulling power and a fuel-efficient, comfortable driving experience.

The Tadcaster-based firm opted for Volvo following a successful trial with a demonstrator and having received positive feedback from other local companies running FH tractor units.

“We have always liked Volvo and were keen to try and get one onto the fleet,” explains Brian Whitaker, Transport Manager at Braegate Produce. “We spoke with the team at Crossroads Truck & Bus and gave them an idea of what they were up against to win the business. What they came back with hit the mark perfectly in terms of both the vehicle specification and the monthly rate.”

Delivering potatoes to supermarkets and regional distribution centres up and down the country, the FH will be working five to six days a week, covering roughly 140,000 km per annum. It will operate predominantly on long-distance motorway work, but will also collect from potato farms, which means tackling narrow and sometimes bumpy country lanes and access roads.

Built with Volvo’s 12-speed I-Shift automated gearbox complete with long haul fuel plus package, plus I-See predictive cruise control – the FH is already returning impressive figures for Braegate.

“The main focus for us is fuel economy. If the FH can match, or better, the rival manufacturers we’ve got on the fleet then we will go back to Volvo again,” says Whitaker. “Obviously, it’s a brand-new truck and it still needs to be run-in, but we’re very happy with what we’ve seen so far.

“We’ve even had Volvo’s local Fuelwatch Manager visit to make sure our driver was getting the best possible performance from the vehicle. He used to have a Volvo before he joined us, so naturally he’s delighted to get back behind the wheel of a top-spec FH Globetrotter!”

The 44-tonne tractor unit has been supplied on a four-year Volvo Financial Services contract hire deal which incorporates a Volvo Gold Contract repair and maintenance package, to guarantee maximum uptime. All servicing and maintenance work will be done at Crossroads Truck and Bus in Normanton.