Friday 21 Jan 2022
Network Rail begins major work to historic railway bridge in Gateshead this month
Network Rail will begin major work to repair and strengthen Wellington Street railway bridge on Monday 24 January, in a project which will make sure it remains fit for purpose for years to come.
The work will see the bridge, which was built in 1902, strengthened and repairs to steelwork carried out. A section of the bridge will also be painted, helping to improve the look of the structure.
The £3.2million project is vital to future-proof the bridge and make sure that trains can continue to run reliably and safely.
The project is being delivered in two stages to minimise disruption for motorists and residents in the area.
The first stage will run between January and late spring and will see the road under the Western span closed. After this, teams will switch work location, with the Eastern span closed until the project completes in October 2022. During this time, the phases of the traffic lights will be adjusted to keep road users safe, and traffic flowing.
Sarah Reid, Route Director for Network Rail’s East Coast route, said: “This is a really important project which will make sure trains can continue to run reliably. The project will help minimise future disruption to passengers and mean people can continue to enjoy strong rail links and connections with towns and cities across the country.
“We know this work is going to have an impact on motorists and we’re really sorry for this. We have done all that we can to reduce this impact and we’ll continue to work closely with Gateshead Council on this project.”
All traffic approaching Wellington Street bridge from the west, along Askew Road, will need to use one lane only for the duration of the work. However, all existing traffic movements at the junction will still be possible.
The existing bus lane on Askew Road, between Wellington Street and A167 High Street will continue to operate as normal. There will also be a lane closure on the West Central Route northbound.
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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.