Wednesday 2 Apr 2003


The coastline at Siddick (Cumbria) is to receive a £600,000 face-lift as a result of essential sea defence work being carried out by Network Rail. The eight-week scheme, which started on 17 March, is being undertaken by Edmund Nuttall Ltd (North West Structures Alliance) and will ensure the long-term future of the Carlisle to Barrow railway line. The Cumbrian coast railway line presently suffers at the mercy of high tides and lies at risk from the sea flooding the tracks and depositing debris. With the track at this location being renewed, flooding can no longer be tolerated, as it will damage the new infrastructure. The sea defence improvements were originally planned for 2004/2005 and 2005/2006 but have been brought forward to gain maximum benefit from the track renewal in this area. Although there is no immediate danger to avoid such flooding, the plan is to import 11,000 tonnes of rock armour onto the beach as well as reworking 2,700 tonnes of the existing stone defences.  The imported rock will be stacked up on the beach in two locations acting as a barrier and stopping the tide from reaching the tracks above as well as preventing the supporting sea wall from being eroded. In total a quarter of a mile of coastline will be improved and when complete will be strengthened against the most extreme weather conditions for up to fifty years. - more - Siddick - 2 All the work will be carried out from the beach during the day, Monday to Friday. There will be no disruption to Carlisle to Barrow services during the work. The scheme is part of a number of coastal improvement projects being carried out between Whitehaven and Maryport. The most recent one was an earthwork project, completed late last month at Parton. This involved the installation of a large number of huge rock filled wire cubes at the bottom of the railway cutting slope to prevent earth being washed on to the tracks, thereby preventing a potential blockage.

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