Repair works were undertaken on the Carlisle to Settle railway following a 500,000 tonne landslip in February 2016, closing the line near Armathwaite.
Client Network Rail
Location Armathwaite, Cumbria
Duration 14 months
Value £23m (full project value)
The site is located between 2 geological faults and during the construction of the railway in the lates 1800’s, a failure occurred which ‘pushed the river into the next Parish’.
The railway line is located 200m away from the river and 60m above. Reactivation of the historic landslide, following Storm Desmond, caused movement at circa 15m depth between the River Eden at the base of the river bank, resulting in large movements of the rail embankment and Upside tracks.
A solution was designed to allow the line to be reopened while allowing the structure and railway to be stable whilst the landslide continues to move. This has been completed in the form of an anchored contiguous bored pile wall which is ‘socketed’ into the ‘intact’ bedrock below the failure.
Scope of Engineering Works
The Engineering works involved in the repairing of the historic railway involved:
The STORY way
During the main works of the project the site ran day and night to ensure the railway could be handed back on time and on budget, ahead of the reopening celebration with the Flying Scotmans passing over the site.
Local residents were very supportive of the essential works that were required to re-open the railway. Regular updates were communicated throughout the duration of the works and included local residents meetings and two successful public drop in events. Project information boards were also displayed in the two nearby villages, regularly updating the community on upcoming works.
To celebrate the re-opening of the railway, Story Contracting and Network Rail held an open evening at the local community hall for residents to thank them for their support throughout the works.
On the 31st March, the much loved section of the Carlisle to Settle railway line was fully re-opened.
During the design stage of the project the time was used to install the required access and carry out enabling works to ensure that once the design was approved, works could commence.
After careful deliberation, a piling solution was chosen: two rows of high-strength steel piles filled with concrete, driven into the sloping bedrock, forming a corridor upon which a one metre-thick, 100 metre-long concrete shelf would be placed.
The project was able to demonstrate success via early involvement of specialist contractors to ensure a buildable solution was designed. The scheme also utilised Engineering Trains to remove spoil from site, import stone and pile casings to remove HGV movements from the local roads where possible.
A robust Inspection and Test plan process was used to ensure the tight tolerances could be met to deliver a quality project.
To find out more about how we can help you deliver your project contact Paul Marrs on: 01228 590 444
This has been a hugely challenging job, as I saw for myself last year. I am impressed and grateful to the innovative team that led this work and to Story and the other contractors who helped make it happen. Well done to you all. A great railway team effort.
Mark Carne - Network Rail