West Lothian is ideally placed to deliver location solutions for growing companies in the Logistics and Distribution sector.
The area occupies a strategic position in central Scotland with easy access to the major population centres of Edinburgh and Glasgow. West Lothian is within one
hour’s drive to 60% of Scotland’s population. The M8 and M9 motorways both bisect West Lothian providing easy access across Central Scotland while the M74 motorway that gives access to England and the South is only a ten minute drive along the M8. The busy passenger/air freight terminal at Edinburgh Airport is also within 15 minutes drive of West Lothian.
West Lothian’s dynamic local economy and excellent business networks provide a supportive backdrop for companies choosing to locate in the area. Integrated support for business, a forward thinking planning authority and Development Area Status give West Lothian a competitive edge in delivering tailored solutions for relocating businesses.
West Lothian’ s central location in Scotland, with easy access for staff and proximity to markets, is key. But equally important is West Lothian ‘s forward thinking approach, and the ‘can do’ attitude of its people. In West Lothian we make things happen, providing a positive environment and quality of life for our businesses and our people. We are confident that West Lothian will deliver a solution to your business location requirements.
Distribution and Logistics in West Lothian
Some 100 distribution companies have recognised the benefits of West Lothian's strategic location in Scotland, that makes it ideal for Logistics Operations. At present, approximately 5,100 people are employed in this sector within West Lothian, accounting for over 9% of total employment in the local economy.
The logistics sector in West Lothian is growing all the time with supermarket giants Aldi and Morrisons being the latest companies to establish major distribution facilities in the area, Aldi opening a 38,100 sq m Distribution centre at J4M8 near Bathgate in January 2005 and Morrisons followed suit by taking an 11,031 sq m site at Pyramids Business Park, also in Bathgate in April 2005.
Tesco is Britain's biggest supermarket retailer and has a temperature controlled distribution centre located in Livingston employing more than 1200 people.
Lidl (UK) is a German discount supermarket chain that has grown consistently in the UK since 1994 and has had a Scottish distribution centre in Livingston since 1995 employing over 700 people.
Exel is one of the world's largest logistics companies with 111,000 employees worldwide in over 135 countries worldwide and a turnover of turnover of £6.3 billion. Their multi-temperature distribution centre in Livingston employs over 300 people.
Wincanton Logistics is the second largest logistics company in the UK employing some 19,500 people in the UK offering a full range of services from single site operations to complex supply chain management. Their distribution centre in Bathgate forms part of their nationwide supply chain offering.
Kuehne & Nagel handle the logistics operation for Scottish Courage, the global brewing giant who have their 14000 sq m (150,500 sq ft) regional distribution facility at the state of the art J4M8 distribution park. Scottish Courage have also located their UK Contact Centre operations in West Lothian, based at Livingston?s Deer Park Business Campus.
MRS Distribution are a UK logistics business founded in 1975 with their head office in Bathgate, West Lothian. They operate in 10 locations across the UK from their West Lothian base.
West Lothian also has excellent access direct to the continent. The Superfast ferry link from Rosyth to Zeebrugge is 15 minutes drive from West Lothian and using the Superfast service allows West
Lothian logistics company drivers to travel to or from the Continent without using up valuable Working Time Directive hours. The Eurocentral railfreight hub is is located just 21 miles from Livingston. Scotland's only Eurofreight Terminal, it provides direct linkage from Scotland via the Channel Tunnel to mainland Europe with daily trains to France, Benelux and Italy. Eurocentral is immediately adjacent to the A8/M8 and a new intersection has just been completed providing direct access to and from the motorway. West Lothian is also within easy reach of freight services from the following ports:
Grangemouth has become Scotland's major container port with a mix of door-to-door traffic and deepsea connections to worldwide destinations and with easy access onto the M9 it is only twenty minutes drive from West Lothian.
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The prime location for distribution businesses in West Lothian is J4M8, a purpose built distribution park located directly on junction 4 of the M8, hence the name. It is located equidistant between Edinburgh and Glasgow and has up to 185000 sq m of floorspace available
The accommodation can be designed and constructed to occupier’s specifications by a professional team. With two major transactions, totalling 52950 sq m (570,000 sq ft), already concluded the J4M8 team is well placed to react swiftly and efficiently to specific requirements, minimising the time period between initial instruction and occupation of a completed unit.
Current occupants are Scottish Courage who have located their national Distribution Centre on the site and Aldi who have recently located their Scottish distribution centre here.
Several other business parks including Houston and Deans industrial parks in Livingston and Burnhouse industrial park in Whitburn have land available for development for planning use class 6 (distribution). For more details see our Industrial Parks Page.
Forthcoming developments include the new Heartlands industrial park that will be located adjacent to the M8 near Whitburn. This site will include a dedicated new motorway junction for the site providing direct road access across Central Scotland and with the WEEE directive in place, will be targeted at reverse logistics in the electronics sector
Confidence in the Future
Confidence in the growing status of West Lothian as a logistics hub is strong in the academic world. Alan McKinnon is a professor at the Heriot Watt University's school of management
and he's been analysing the region's suitability for supply chain activities since the 1980s.
"Previously studies done on the logistical abilities of the region have all reported favourably on West Lothian's potential growth in this sector," says McKinnon. "Feedback from major hub operators have also led us to draw conclusions that logistics operators are all in search of the kind of regional opportunity that Livingston and its surrounding areas represent. This is not just businesses on a quest for major hubs but also for break-bulk forwarding facilities that can be easily accommodated at places like J4M8 or closer to more traditional freighting lanes like the regional ports and airports," concludes McKinnon.
More information is available on the website about Relocation Support, Business
Property, Funding Sources, Getting to West Lothian and Quality of Life. We also have a variety of Case Studies and information on Recently Relocated Firms. If you are considering West Lothian as a location for your organisation we will be happy to meet you to understand and discuss your plans, contact Alice Sinnet on: Telephone: 01506 283079 or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org