Stonehaven-Montrose railway line repairs underway

The railway line between Stonehaven and Montrose is to remain closed until February 22 as engineers work to carry out repairs on a damaged bridge between the towns.

The rail bridge, built in the 1840s, has been closed since the January 15 after masonry fell from the sidewall on its southbound side.

Full structural assessments on the bridge, three miles north of Carmont, have now been completed by Network Rail specialist engineers and plans are in place to repair the bridge and reopen the railway for passengers and freight customers.

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Engineers will be working around-the-clock to fix the damaged sidewall and provide additional strengthening of the bridge deck beneath the southbound line.

They will first install additional concrete supports on the bridge deck to help retain and support the track and ballast.

The sidewall then is rebuilt and ties fitted on the bridge to further strengthen the brickwork on the structure. Once those works are complete, the ballast and track will be repaid.

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Network Rail is investing over £300m between 2019 and 2024 into renewing and refurbishing bridges and spends £10m each year on inspecting structures.

Additional inspections have also been carried out as a precaution on other similar bridges between Aberdeen and Montrose, and elsewhere on Scotland’s Railway.

Network Rail’s Capital Delivery Director for Scotland’s Railway, Kris Kinnear, said: “We’re working hard to quickly deliver these repairs and reopen the line, but these are significant engineering works and will take time to complete.

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“The rural location of the bridge and the fact our engineers will be working at a considerable height in an exposed location also mean this project is a challenging one for our team.

“We are working around-the-clock to safely reopen the railway as soon as we possibly can for our customers.”

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Sam Hewitt

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