Global design, fabrication, construction and engineering company Cleveland Bridge UK has begun works on North Yorkshire Moors Railway (NYMR) landmark Bridge 27.
The work is the first in a series of scheduled vital repairs for the world-famous visitor attraction and popular movie location, as part of its Yorkshire’s Magnificent Journey (YMJ) project.
Carrying the 180-year-old railway over the Eller Beck at Goathland Station, the 20-metre Bridge 27 is best recognised as the iconic track leading to Hogsmeade Station, where the young wizards embarked for Hogwarts in the first Harry Potter movie, The Philosopher’s Stone.
Cleveland Bridge UK is working its own magic on the project, applying decades of bridge building expertise and advanced production methods to design, fabricate and install the new structure on the railway line.
The 84 tonne, single span bridge is being constructed at Cleveland Bridge UK’s 27,000sqm factory in Darlington, which has the capacity to enable its engineers to undertake a full trial assembly of the structure.
As part of Cleveland Bridge’s expansion of its services to its clients, it was able to offer NYMR a full turn-key package for the project including the dismantling and removal of the old structure, earthworks, pre-casting of concrete elements, installation of the new structure and in-situ casting of the new deck.
The trial assembly ensures a more efficient final installation when the bridge components are transported by road to Middlesbrough and then via rail to Goathland in the New Year.
Jim Mawson, Head of Operational Delivery for Cleveland Bridge UK, said: “We are exceptionally proud to be part of such a landmark restoration project at one of the most iconic heritage railway lines in the world. It’s really pleasing to see our contemporary production methods using modern materials so perfectly blended with the classic design of this bridge to ensure it fits seamlessly into its North Yorkshire National Park surroundings.
“Undertaking a full trial assembly, including the bridge’s pre-cast concrete elements, emphasises the capabilities and extensive facilities we have at Cleveland Bridge, which offers real benefits to clients in terms of efficiencies and peace of mind.”
NYMR’s ambitious project has been made possible by grants from The National Lottery Heritage Fund, the Rural Payments Agency, the Local Enterprise Partnership and the generosity of supporters.
John Bailey, NYMR Trust Chairman, said: “The restoration of Bridge 27 marks the beginning of our exciting plans to preserve the railway’s historical infrastructure and assets and improve visitor services and experiences for future generations to come.
“Everyone at the railway would like to thank the grant funding agencies and our generous donors who’ve made it possible. These are exciting times for everyone who cares for the railway, our visitors, supporters, staff and volunteers. This is the most ambitious project we’ve ever undertaken and will build on our successful growth in recent years, so we can all achieve even more in the future.”
With a combination of donations and grants the Charity has raised 90% of the funds to deliver its YMJ project. The heritage railway still needs to raise an additional £1 million over the next three years and is appealing for further support to achieve that target.
For further information and to donate, please visit www.nymr.co.uk/YMJ.