Monday 23 Nov 2020
Grade II listed footbridge at Prudhoe station reopens after £500,000 refurbishment
Network Rail has reopened the Grade II listed footbridge at Prudhoe station for passengers after a major project to strengthen, clean and repaint it.
Work began on the £500,000 refurbishment to restore the bridge to its former glory in July. Network Rail teams lifted it out in sections so the improvements could be carried out off site, keeping disruption to passengers to a minimum.
Once the bridge was removed, sand was blasted at the bridge to remove the layers of old paint and strip it back to bare metal. This meant teams could carry out detailed inspections to find out where further strengthening and repair work was needed.
The work was done carefully to preserve the heritage of the footbridge and where possible, new material to strengthen the bridge was put over the original metal.
After new coats of paint, the fully refurbished bridge was put back in place at the station earlier this month. The final stages of the project involved installing the new floor surfacing on the bridge before it could open for passengers.
Whist the footbridge was having its transformation, passengers could access both platforms via the pedestrian footpath over the level crossing at the station.
Paul Rutter, Route Director for Network Rail’s East Coast Route, said: “The transformation of the footbridge at Prudhoe station is astounding and it’s great that this work has been completed in keeping with its heritage.
“It’s so much more than a fresh coat of the traditional red and white paint. Our teams have looked closely at every detail and restored the bridge back to its former glory.
“We want to thank passengers for their patience whilst temporary changes were made in the station. Now the footbridge is back in place, it can be used by passengers for years to come.”
Guy Opperman, MP for Hexham, said: "I am delighted that the refurbishment of the footbridge at Prudhoe station is complete and that it is now open for use again. Continued investment in the rail network along the Tyne Valley is hugely welcome as it improves passengers’ experience and, in this case, also safeguards a part of Prudhoe’s rail heritage for future generations."
Kerry Peters, Regional Director at Northern, said: “Improvements like these at Prudhoe are essential in delivering our long-term strategy for the rail network and is a great example of the rail industry working together to improve the network.
“The work on the footbridge looks fantastic and is part of our ongoing commitment to make our stations better for customers.”
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We own, operate and develop Britain's railway infrastructure; that's 20,000 miles of track, 30,000 bridges, tunnels and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations. We run 20 of the UK's largest stations while all the others, over 2,500, are run by the country's train operating companies.
Usually, there are almost five million journeys made in the UK and over 600 freight trains run on the network. People depend on Britain's railway for their daily commute, to visit friends and loved ones and to get them home safe every day. Our role is to deliver a safe and reliable railway, so we carefully manage and deliver thousands of projects every year that form part of the multi-billion pound Railway Upgrade Plan, to grow and expand the nation's railway network to respond to the tremendous growth and demand the railway has experienced - a doubling of passenger journeys over the past 20 years.