Early opening of Penrith’s new £1.1m footbridge over the West Coast main line: Gillwilly footbridge bridge lift

Friday 28 Jul 2017

Early opening of Penrith’s new £1.1m footbridge over the West Coast main line

London North Western

A new footbridge which will provide safe access over the railway through Penrith for years to come has been officially opened.

Gillwilly footbridge, north of Penrith station, reopened today (Friday 28 July) - three days earlier than expected.

Local residents joined the Mayor and members of Eden District Council, Network Rail and its contractor Storey on the Castletown side of the bridge to mark the occasion.                        

As part of the Great North Rail Project, which is part of the national Railway Upgrade Plan, work started to replace the original footbridge in April 2017. It was lifted into place on 15 July (see pics) and now carries local people over the busy, electrified West Coast main line.

Helena Povah, project scheme sponsor for Network Rail, said:

“I’d like to thank local residents for their patience while the footbridge was closed while we carried out this essential work. Not only did we have to remove the old pedestrian footbridge and install the new steel footbridge, we also had to make some important alterations to the overhead line equipment which powers the trains.

“I am delighted that the work is now complete and residents can use this new footbridge to cross the railway safely.”

Mary Robinson, Chairman of the District Council, said:

“We’re delighted to see the bridge reopened which connects the Castletown residents back to the other side of town - with no more detours!”

Scott Jackson, Mayor of Penrith, added:

“Thank you Story Contracting and Network Rail for helping build bridges in Penrith!”

The £1.1m investment in the bridge complements the recent upgrade work at Penrith station, adding to the improved railway facilities for the local community.

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