DHL announces £32m investment to relocate operations in Colnbrook

DHL Express has announced plans for a major investment to relocate its Heathrow Hub from Hounslow to Colnbrook.

Ken Allen, the global CEO of DHL's Express division, was at Heathrow this week to help announce a significant investment in DHL Express UK's infrastructure.

Ken Allen, the global CEO of DHL’s Express division, was at Heathrow this week to help announce a significant investment in DHL Express UK’s infrastructure.

Ken Allen, the global CEO of DHL’s Express division, was at Heathrow this week to help announce a significant investment in DHL Express UK’s infrastructure.

A £156m investment will be targeted at improvements to it’s hubs at East Midlands, Manchester and Heathrow Airports, with its Heathrow Hub being moved to Colnbrook.

DHL Express’ current site at Hounslow serves as a distribution centre, service centre for couriers, head office and operations centre. It will be moved in its entirety to a new location in Colnbrook.

Phil Couchman, UK CEO, said the new £32m Colnbrook distribution centre will be configured in a ‘finger-style’, whereby vehicles will unload into a series of gates extending away from the main building, similar in principle to air gates at a passenger airport.

Confidence in the UK economy will grow and cause us to invest in CapEx. DHL have done that today – it is a great tonic for the rest of British business

Couchman says the new hub will be “fully automated” with fork lift trucks being eliminated to improve quality and accuracy of handling.  Safety will be improved as a result:

“We already have a very good safety record, but having no fork lift trucks on site reduces risk. “

Work is expected to be completed by mid-2016.

Director-general of the CBI, John Cridland, said:

“Confidence in the UK economy will grow and cause us to invest in CapEx. DHL have done that today – it is a great tonic for the rest of British business.”

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