Image: Department of Transport

Skyports has secured funding for future of freight transformation on remote Scottish islands as part of nine new innovative freight projects which have been awarded £1.2 million in government funding.

The first winners of the Freight Innovation Fund (FIF), backed by £7 million overall, have been announced today and could help create cleaner, more innovative ways of delivering freight around the country. This could lead to reduced emissions, increased numbers of high-skilled jobs and better delivery services in hard-to-reach parts of the UK.

The winners include Skyports Deliveries, which will use drones to improve island-to-island connectivity in the Orkney Islands and Electric Assisted Vehicles, which is developing a four-wheel, electrically assisted lightweight delivery vehicle to help reduce road emissions.

The fund is one part of the government’s Future of Freight plan launched last year, setting a strategy to work closely with industry to deliver a world-class freight system, which supports economic growth and builds on the measures already taken to tackle the global HGV driver shortage.

Future technology

Roads Minister Richard Holden said: “Whether it’s drones for deliveries on remote islands or zero emission buggies – we want to invest in future technology that could transform how we move goods around the country while reducing emissions and traffic and creating skilled jobs.

“The Freight Innovation Fund gives innovators the opportunity to test their ideas and help our freight industry become greener and more efficient – unlocking better connectivity and boosting growth across the country.”

The winning projects are led by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that have designed innovative technology and are partnered with existing industry companies to explore the viability of these solutions in real-world conditions.

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