all the latest updates and insights for scalable last mile solutions
Fernhay is a winner of grant funding from Innovate UK, the UK's innovation agency.
Fernhay believes the things we are doing are the right things to do for society. Van free logistics is at the heart of our offering, and through a transition to walking and cycling logistics we can work towards liveable cities where choosing modes other than the van becomes the norm for freight.
In recent weeks our cities and towns have focused on how to move people in this new world, but little has been said about how to move vast quantities of freight and parcels when we create van free zones downtown.
We believed (and still do) in mass transit, shared space and cities where people enjoy walking and cycling. What we are trying to achieve is the same transition to walking and cycling in logistics as our city leaders are now putting in place for their communities, often through emergency legislative powers. Perhaps that is part of the reason why we were successful in the InnovateUK competition, which saw an unprecedented amount of interest, topping more than 8,600 entries.
Last mile freight logistics must innovate, innovate and innovate some more in this new normal. At Fernhay we invest a high percentage of our turnover into releasing novel products, whilst continuously developing new concepts that will be released onto a regular production line.
Core to our grant supported work will be encouraging a typical van driver to enjoy using our equipment. For us it is not just about fit, young (probably) male cyclists. To transform the market we must appeal to a wide demographic.
Enter from stage left wing is the concept of the age simulation suit from a very long time ago!
It is an amazing piece of kit. It transforms you into understanding the limits of social inclusion through creating restricted movement, poor eyesight, hearing loss, joint stiffness and reduced strength.
So, how is this important when we look at the funding Fernhay has just been awarded from Innovate UK relating to Covid 19? The young fit man on the right enjoys his cycling but if we put him in an age simulation suit and told him to ride the very fast courier bike he is on (we bought one to benchmark with), he might decide it was not a great piece of kit for doing the work he has been employed to do.
Our work will demonstrate that our parcel delivery system can be operated safely by our average van driver without help, from depot to the door of the customer.
And with reference to that wonderful age simulation suit, we no longer need it in Fernhay testing… The inexperienced, fit engineers have turned into grumpy old engineers who do not need a suit to reveal their limitations!