Overhead shot of River Devon Bridge at Newark showing double tracks and river below with a weir. There is a road to the left

Network Rail replaces strategic bridge

Overhead shot of River Devon Bridge at Newark Network Rail

Network Rail, the UK rail infrastructure agency, are about to begin a major upgrade to a route-critical railway viaduct in Newark, Nottinghamshire. Engineering teams are set to begin major work to the River Devon Viaduct in Newark in order to keep freight and passenger trains running reliably and safely for years to come. Starting this coming Saturday, 2 September, and on-site until Monday, 11 September, teams will be working to completely renew the River Devon Viaduct, which carries the railway over the River Trent.

The relatively modest two million pound (3.2 million euro) investment will see a full renewal of the bridge, including replacing all 44 beams, with new, fibre-reinforced foamed urethane beams, which are more environmentally friendly than traditional hardwood sleepers, and are fully recyclable. The line is part of a web of east-west routes that criss-cross the county of Nottinghamshire. Most of the railway infrastructure was installed to exploit the coal reserves in the area – although the mining industry is now defunct.

Future-proof the railway

The ten-day programme of works will install new rails and sleepers, as well as structural improvements to the viaduct itself. During the possession, passenger services will be replaced by buses, in place of the normal East Midlands Railway timetable. Planned strike action on Saturday, 2 September will mean no services, including bus replacement services, on this date.

“The work we’re doing to the River Devon Viaduct will boost reliability”, said Rachel Braid, Project Manager for Network Rail. “It will also future-proof the railway and enable trains to continue to run over the viaduct for years to come.” The bridge crossing lies just south of Newark Castle station, and an interface with the East Coast Main Line, where the lines meet in the last remaining “flat crossing” in the UK.

Author: Simon Walton

Simon Walton is UK correspondent for RailTech.com and Railfreight.com

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