DIRFT3 Rail Freight Depot

“Throughout this collaborative project, we aimed to meet the unique needs of DIRFT 3 by leveraging our expertise in rail signalling and civils. We’ve sent our TIC to Germany to attend specialised training for the installation of axle counters, ensuring we have the capability to address unique challenges on-site.”

Victor Heath, Head of Signalling, RSS Infrastructure

Services Delivered

This case study investigates a collaborative project between Fenix Rail Systems and the Signalling and Civils Divisions at DIRFT 3. To date, the project value is £263K with ongoing work required due to changes in design and plans. Originally planned for a duration of 12 weeks, this project aims to create an efficient train loading and unloading area for the Royal Mail and other businesses in the DIRFT complex.

Key Actions

  • Supplying installation staff, testers, and a Tester in Charge (TIC) for Fenix’s depot control system.
  • Creating the Testing and Commissioning plan and associated paperwork.
  • Contributing to the design development, providing feedback on issues faced on site.
  • Sending the TIC for training in Germany to certify competence in testing
    and training others for axle counter installation.
DIRFT3 Rail Freight Depot | Infrastructure Services & Solutions | RSS Infrastructure



Project Value




Project Duration

12 Weeks

Project Delivery

The Daventry International Rail Freight Terminal (DIRFT) is a robust freight terminal responsible for receiving containers by train, which are subsequently loaded onto lorries for nationwide distribution. The existing terminals, DIRFT 1 and 2, host depots for Tesco and Sainsbury’s respectively. The focus of this project, DIRFT 3, is being developed to service the Royal Mail and other businesses.

Fenix Rail Systems faced a challenge with DIRFT 3 with WinVic constructing a new train loading/unloading area for Prologis UK that can cater to multiple businesses within the DIRFT complex. The Royal Mail have built a vast sorting and distribution centre with a direct train line into the depot. Fenix, providing the depot control system to operate trains in and out of the depot, required a team to install, test, and commission the equipment.

In response, the Signalling Division provided installation staff, Testers, and a Tester in Charge. In addition to creating the testing and commissioning plan and associated paperwork, the Division has actively contributed to design development, sharing on-site issues with the design team to enable necessary improvements.

To tackle unique on-site challenges, particularly around the installation of axle counters from manufacturer Pintsch, Signalling sent the Tester in Charge to Germany for special training. This training ensured the team’s competence to test and also train others in axle counter installation, further augmenting the team’s expertise to deliver on the project objectives.

The ongoing collaboration and proactive approach in handling challenges underscore the commitment to delivering a solution that will significantly enhance the operations of DIRFT 3.

About Us

RSS Infrastructure (RSSI), based in Birmingham, Cwmbran, Doncaster and Tonbridge, provides infrastructure services for the rail, civil, and utilities sectors. We serve clients like Network Rail, WMCA, HS2 and Tier 1 & 2 contractors. Our services include Arboriculture, Civils and Construction, Geofencing, Industrial Rope Access (IRATA), Magnetic Track Safety, Rail Operations including Possession Management and P/Way, Rail Welding, Signalling, and Track Warning Services.