Transport and Distribution

FWD members collectively operate over 7,000 delivery vehicles which make over 200,000 deliveries every week to small businesses in every postcode of the UK. FWD is therefore closely involved in policy discussions around transport, logistics and distribution around the UK.

Deliveries to shops and restaurants in busy towns and cities keep these businesses afloat, but they can be disruptive. FWD members seek to abide by parking restrictions and delivery hours and work with local authorities to minimise their impact.


FWD is currently monitoring possible changes to parking regulations following a recent consultation, and contributed to the debate on Ultra Low Emission Zones, which could see older diesel-engine delivery vehicles banned from some city centres by 2020.

Government plans

The Government has introduced measures to help alleviate the driver shortage

November 2021:

The Department for Transport has announced a series of measures to help the HGV driver shortage.

 A review of the CPC regime, looking at ways to improve compulsory ongoing training for existing and returning HGV drivers.  

The Government is also working with stakeholders to identify a number of lorry parks across the country where short-term facilities such as temporary toilets, showers and catering can be delivered in the coming months.

Among other measures already taken to support the haulage industry, the number of weekly HGV tests available has increased by 90% after the process was streamlined. Training for up to 5,000 new drivers through skills bootcamps has also been announced.

The temporary relaxation of drivers’ hours has been extended until 11.59pm on 9 January 2022.

Zero emission HGV

All new heavy goods vehicles in the UK will be zero-emission by 2040, the Government has announced. The UK will become the first country in the world to commit to phasing out new, non-zero emission heavy goods vehicles weighing 26 tonnes and under by 2035, with all new HGVs sold in the UK to be zero emission by 2040.

The Clean Air Strategy  has the following implications for FWD wholesalers:


  • The Transport Secretary will have the powers, from new legislation, to force manufactures to recall vehicles and non-road mobile machinery for any failures in their emissions control system, and to take effective action against tampering with vehicle emissions control systems.
  • The Government will attempt to develop a new standard for tyres and breaks to address toxic non-exhaust particulate emissions from vehicles which include micro plastics and can pollute air and water.
  • The Government will aim to encourage the use of the cleanest modes of transport for freight and passengers, including active travel.
  • The cost of Red diesel is being reviewed by the Government and the Treasury to ensure that its lower price is not disincentivising the transition to cleaner alternatives.

The strategy notes that analysis shows that the actions set out in this strategy can meet the Government’s ambitious emissions reduction targets, if they are implemented with the necessary pace and determination. The Government also claims that these improve on current EU rules.

Sustainable Delivery

The Department of Transport launched a on consultation on sustainable ways to deliver goods as well as another consultation on urban mobility strategy 

The Government’s ambition is to see ultra-low emission vans to represent 40% of all new vans purchased by 2030, and that by 2040 zero emission vans should represent 100% of new vans purchased. However, registrations of ULEV vans represent less than 0.5% of all new van registrations.


Last Mile

Key points from the Last Mile consultation:

  • The hope is that the Plug-in Van Grant will help bridge the cost gap between ULEV vans and internal combustion engine vans. The Government cut the Plug-in Car Grant by £1,000, however, this did not affect the Plug-in Van Grant.
  • The Government expects to see van purchase prices fall in the coming years as battery prices continue to fall.
  • According to the Government, manufactures have scheduled the launch of a number of new ULEV cans and trucks, including medium and large vans, they also have since Summer 2018 increased the weight limit of electric vans from 3.5t to 4.24t.
  • In response to charging infrastructure and the energy network, the Government will be considering an extension to the Workplace Charging Scheme entitlement from 20 sockets per company to 20 sockets per site.

The Government has pledged to collaborate with the industry in the coming years to help the sector fulfil the commitment to reduce HGV carbon dioxide emissions by 15% by 2025.

The Government strategy on sustainable ways to deliver goods builds on the government’s Road to Zero Strategy which forms an important part of government’s work on the Future of Mobility Grand Challenge. This is considering how emerging technologies and services can be used to address a range of transport challenges.