Thursday 11 Jan 2018
New bridge in Tottenham marks the beginning of restoring a line lost during the Beeching era
As part of Network Rail’s £170m Lee Valley Rail programme, disused land is being used to reinstate a third track between Stratford and Angel Road stations which was lost during the Beeching cuts of the 1960s. Video footage shows the installation of a new railway bridge in Tottenham which will once again carry a third track over the River Lea Navigation. Due to be complete in 2019, the project will enable two extra trains per hour*, unlocking sites for housing development and economic growth in the boroughs of Enfield, Haringey and Waltham Forrest.
The Lee Valley Rail programme, running between Lea Bridge station which reopened in May 2016 and Enfield’s new station, Meridian Water, will provide a much needed third track on a congested section of the West Anglia Mainline.
In one of its first major milestones, the project successfully lifted in a 400 tonne bridge last weekend. This included lifting two 40 metre long girders, weighing 138 tonne, over the adjacent line which was closed to passenger services. The operation was overseen by Network Rail and contractors VolkerFitzpatrick, and involved using a 600 tonne crawler crane to lift sections of the bridge into position.
Meliha Duymaz, Network Rail’s route managing director for Anglia, said: “This milestone and project shows how we can re-open and reinstate previously disused railway lines to provide a better railway in an efficient way. By using the space available to us we’re able to build an extra track in a built up area which will enable more trains to run, improve connections to homes and jobs, and support economic growth. We are also making improvements at Northumberland Park and Tottenham Hale stations to make it easier for passengers to access train services. I’d like to thank passengers and lineside neighbours for their patience whilst we carried out this work and also thank our people on the ground for making it a success.”
John Cox, managing director of VolkerFitzpatrick’s rail division, said: “We are excited to be working with Network Rail on this project, as part of the Anglia Route Collaboration. The VolkerFitzpatrick team worked safely and efficiently, to complete the bridge install to a high standard. I am proud of their dedication and hard work, towards the delivery of this key project milestone.”
Jamie Burles, managing director, Greater Anglia, said: “These works should provide an improved, more reliable railway for passengers on the West Anglia route. All passengers should continue to check before they travel, and we would like to thank them for their patience and understanding.”
The improvement work and new Meridian Water station is part of the £170m Lee Valley Rail Programme, which is jointly funded by UK Government, the Mayor of London, the London Economic Action Partnership (now known as “LEAP”), Transport for London, and Enfield and Haringey Councils.
The funding partners and Network Rail are working together to deliver benefits in the north London corridor which will improve rail services and maximise economic growth, jobs and housing opportunities. The plans will increase rail capacity on the West Anglia Main Line and accommodate proposed plans for Crossrail 2.
About Network Rail
Network Rail owns, manages and develops Britain's railway - the 20,000 miles of track, 40,000 bridges and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations (the largest of which we also run). In partnership with train operators we help people take more than 1.65bn journeys by rail every year and move hundreds of millions of tonnes of freight, saving almost 8m lorry journeys. We employ 38,000 people across Britain and work round-the-clock, each and every day, to provide a safe, reliable railway.
About the Railway Upgrade Plan
The Railway Upgrade Plan is Network Rail's investment plan for Britain's railways. It makes up two-thirds of Network Rail's £40bn spending priorities for the five years to 2019 and represents the biggest sustained programme of rail modernisation since the Victoria era. It is designed to provide more capacity, relieve crowding and respond to the tremendous growth Britain's railways continue to experience; passenger numbers have doubled in the past 20 years and are set to double again over the next 25 years - so we need to continue to invest in building a bigger, better railway. For passengers, that means:
- longer, faster more frequent trains;
- better, more reliable infrastructure; and
- better facilities for passengers, especially at stations.