Work on viaduct well underway high above streets of Oxted, Surrey
(News release Network Rail:) London, 9 July 2020 - A vital project to protect the future of the railway Oxted in Surrey to Uckfield and East Grinstead in Sussex is racing ahead.
Engineers from Network Rail and BAM Nuttall are working high above the streets of Oxted to refurbish the viaduct that carries the railway across the valley of the River Eden – and the A25.
The railway over the structure has been closed for three weekends in June and July to allow certain aspects of the work to be completed, with another closure this Sunday. However, the majority of the work will not affect passengers and will continue until at least February next year.
As well as all the viaduct steel work being grit-blasted back to bare metal and repainted, colleagues from BAM Nuttall are also repairing brickwork and replacing the movable bearings that support the weight of the bridge spans. These allow the steel to move as it expands and contracts lengthways in the heat of the summer and the cold of the winter, without affecting the railway tracks laid on it.
Paul Harwood, regional investment director for Network Rail, said: ‘Thanks to everyone who has had their weekend travel affected over the past few weeks. Our viaduct in Oxted is more than 100 years old and like any structure of that age, needs maintenance and servicing to keep it safe. Overhauling the viaduct is essential to ensuring we maintain a good level of service for passengers who use this route.’
Chris Fowler, Customer Services Director for Southern, said: ‘On behalf of our customers, we welcome Network Rail’s major investment to maintain safe travel across this local landmark long into the future. We thank everyone who has been affected by these weekend closures for their patience.’
Work at Eridge on the Uckfield line is ongoing, with a new bridge being installed to replace the life-expired original. Read more here
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