July 6 - Collett & Sons has partnered with the UK's Leeds Beckett University to develop bespoke software intended to transform the way the transport provider does business.

Collett says that the project - which was part-funded under the UK government's Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) programme - has significantly increased its technical credibility and strengthened the company's position within the industry.

"The KTP project has raised the capability of our experienced haulage company, positioning us alongside multinational rivals. The development of our integrated expert system formalises our engineering and technical competence, and represents a step change in company capability, while allowing us to increase our market share," claims Collett & Sons projects director, Eric Crosby.

He added that the partnership has seen Collett receive new, higher value contracts and engage with high profile clients in engineering discussions.

As part of the programme, the university sent a member of its staff - Dr Ruben Escribano - to Collett's depot in Goole to work on the project.

Meanwhile, Collett has also taken delivery of a new, lightweight 200-tonne capacity jacking and skidding system from Holmatro.

The system features lightweight components, all of which can be moved by hand, and quick release couplers, as well as a low build height of 56 mm. It requires very little power to move heavy loads horizontally, said Collett.

The expansion of Collett's depot in Grangemouth, Scotland is also nearing completion. The development will see the site's operation area grow from 2 acres (0.8 ha) to 6 acres (2.4 ha), and increase its capacity for handling oversize project and breakbulk cargoes, including wind turbine components.