Little Stoke railway bridge finally moved into place

Published
image copyrightPaul Thomson
image captionSouth Gloucestershire Council said the remainder of the work will be carried out 'round the clock'

A replacement railway bridge has finally been moved into place a fortnight after transporters became bogged down in mud and got stuck.

The 4,260-tonne bridge was due to be moved over the weekend of 31 October at Gipsy Patch Lane, near Bristol, but it was stuck 40m (130 ft) away.

A roadway had to be reinforced to allow hydraulic transporters carrying the bridge to move it into position.

Work to reinstate the railway line will take at least another week.

A spokesman for South Gloucestershire Council said the next phase of the work in Little Stoke is to rebuild the embankment, reinstate the line and reinstall the overhead wires and supporting infrastructure.

"The remainder of the work will be noisy and will be carried out round the clock so it is completed as quickly as possible," he added.

image captionThe new bridge got stuck when transporters tried to move it

"A number of noise-mitigation measures such as acoustic barriers are in place but we apologise for any disruption that may be caused."

The transporters managed to move the new bridge, which was built on site, two-thirds of the way into position before it got stuck, during the initial attempt.

It was the heaviest lift of its kind ever undertaken in the UK.

The railway line between Bristol and Newport was originally due to have reopened on 7 November.

It will now be at least 23 November before it reopens due to the engineering problems.

image captionThe new bridge is now finally in position

Network Rail said it was investigating why the original plan did not work.

The bridge is being replaced as part of the expansion of Bristol's Metrobus network into South Gloucestershire.

It was originally due to be replaced at Easter but work was halted due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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