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CONSTRUCTION STARTS ON GREAT CENTRAL BRIDGE OVER MIDLAND MAIN LINE

The development of an eighteen mile heritage railway across the East Midlands is on track as contractors prepare to build a key bridge. The 30 metre structure will one day carry Great Central Railway trains over the Midland Main Line and should be in place by early Autumn this year.

Contractors are now preparing the ground for the construction work. Work will then move off site as metal is cut and prefabricated sections of concrete are prepared . The bridge itself will be dramatically craned into place over the Midland Main Line.

After the closure of the original Great Central line by British Rail in 1969, a section of the route survived in the East Midlands. However, when 2 bridges and an embankment were removed it was physically divided into two. Both separate lines have been preserved by enthusiasts for heritage trains. They have committed to link up but five hundred metres of track between them needs to be rebuilt. The new bridge is the first key piece of infrastructure to be reinstated.
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Andy Munro, the Chief Executive of the Great Central Railway said, “Our supporters have waited a long time to see the Victorian link between the two lines restored. Rebuilding this bridge is a bold statement of intent which secures a vision for the future, where heritage trains can run between Leicester and the south of Nottingham. To see our supportive contractors MPB in action on site is very exciting and we look forward to ‘bridging the gap!’”

Northsiteplant1 The development of an eighteen mile heritage railway across the East Midlands is on track as contractors prepare to build a key bridge. The 30 metre structure will one day carry Great Central Railway trains over the Midland Main Line and should be in place by early Autumn this year.

Contractors are now preparing the ground for the construction work. Work will then move off site as metal is cut and prefabricated sections of concrete are prepared . The bridge itself will be dramatically craned into place over the Midland Main Line.


Construction of the new bridge and rail link will also give the southern half of the Great Central access to the national network. In turn this will mean excursion trains can access the planned new Heritage Lottery funded rail museum to be built in Leicester.

Phil Stanway – Director GCR(N) said  “Although work has never ceased behind the scenes, the start of the next stage of ground works is pleasing to see and also proof that the bridge IS happening and, although not always evident, IS happening now. There is still a large amount to do but each stage brings us closer to a unified “Greater, Great Central Mainline” and all the benefits it will bring between Ruddington Fields and Leicester North and also to the surrounding area.

With not only the bridge but also the museum at Leicester North gathering pace, these are excited times that we are privileged to be a part of and will support in any way we can. I look forward to the day that I can bring my wife and children all the way from Ruddington to Leicester North by train, spend time looking round the museum and then travel back again. This will be such a testament to all those from both GCR PLC & GCR(N) who have helped along the way in any form, however large or small.

After the closure of the original Great Central line by British Rail in 1969, a section of the route survived in the East Midlands. However, when 2 bridges and an embankment were removed it was physically divided into two. Both separate lines have been preserved by enthusiasts for heritage trains. They have committed to link up but five hundred metres of track between them needs to be rebuilt. The new bridge is the first key piece of infrastructure to be reinstated.

 

Published: 27 June 2017 04:38

Author: Phil Stanway


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