Friday 28 Nov 2003


Region & Route:
Network Rail has been ‘badgered’ into spending over £50,000 to stabilise a 400yd-long railway embankment south of Ravenglass station (Cumbria). The embankment has become riddled with badger setts and the rail company has had to impose a 20mph speed restriction on trains passing over it, which is delaying trains on the Barrow to Carlisle line. Working with the local authority and organisations such as English Nature, Network Rail devised a method of dealing with the badgers and was granted the necessary licence to carry out work that would ensure the long-term future of the embankment. Contractors cleared the land of trees and undergrowth and then put one-way trap doors on the entrances to the setts and covered the embankment with steel anti-badger netting. This meant that once the badgers had left their underground world to go foraging, they were unable to return and had to set up new homes. Having ensured that the setts are empty, liquid concrete will be poured in which will both prevent the badgers returning and stabilise the embankment so that the speed restriction can be lifted. Weather permitting, work is expected to be completed by Christmas.

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