Drone footage shows West Coast main line secured from landslips: Drone shot of finished embankment repairs at Hillmorton on the West Coast main line

Tuesday 7 Dec 2021

Drone footage shows West Coast main line secured from landslips

Region & Route:
North West & Central
| North West & Central: West Coast Mainline South

Work is now complete to protect railway journeys on the West Coast main line after moving land was secured between Milton Keynes and Birmingham.

Torrential rain from Storm Christoph in January this year caused ground beneath the railway lines to become unstable and slip near Hillmorton in Warwickshire.

Urgent work was carried out to make sure passenger and freight journeys weren't put at risk on one of Europe’s busiest mixed-use passenger and freight railway lines.

To get things back up and running quickly, Network Rail completely rebuilt the embankment over a period of 17 days.

However over the last 10 months engineers have carried out a permanent fix.

Drone footage has been release by Network Rail today (7 December) to show the scale of the embankment strengthening project, which will provide reliable journeys for passengers and freight for decades to come.

The work saw:

  • 5,000 tonnes of earth removed from site
  • 18,500 tonnes of new stone laid.
  • 145 piles and 45 special anchors known as ‘soil nails’ driven into the embankment to secure it.
  • A special membrane laid to allow 1,000 tonnes of top soiling and hydroseeding*

Harriet Turner, scheme project manager at Network Rail, said: “I’d like to thank the local community for their patience while we carried out this essential work to secure this railway embankment in Hillmorton.

“Now it’s complete, the land will be secure for generations to come, meaning more reliable journeys for passengers and peace of mind for local residents who travel past this important section of the West Coast main line.”

Network Rail worked closely with Warwickshire County Council to arrange a road closure to allow engineers to carry out the work and keep local people up to date throughout the project.

For more information on how Network Rail maintains and repairs the land beside the railway visit www.networkrail.co.uk/earthworks-cutting-slopes-and-embankments/

Notes to Editors

*Hydroseeding is the process of spraying a mulch of slurry and seeds over areas to control soil erosion, which is more effective than sowing dry seeds.

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