North Yorkshire Moors Railway (NYMR) Goathland

Cleveland Bridge UK was appointed to fabricate and install the new 84-tonne steel bridge for Goathland Station. The full range of services offered by Cleveland Bridge meant the company was appointed main contractor, managing every aspect of the project to ensure timely completion, with minimal disruption to local people and national park visitors.

  • Year: 2020
  • Location: North Yorkshire, England
  • Client: North Yorkshire Moors Railway
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Requirement

The historic North Yorkshire Moors Railway (NYMR) is embarking on a programme of essential infrastructure repairs. The world famous visitor attraction welcomes around 350,000 passengers each year, and many bridges along its scenic route require urgent attention. The bridge project is part of the wider Yorkshire’s Magnificent Journey (YMJ) initiative, a £10 million series of projects funded by grants from The National Lottery Heritage Fund, the Rural Payments Agency and the Local Enterprise Partnership, as well as donations from generous supporters.

The first scheduled work was the replacement of Bridge 27 at Goathland Station, which carries the 180-year-old railway over the Eller Beck. The 20-metre bridge is best recognised as the iconic track leading to Hogsmeade Station, where the young wizards disembark for Hogwarts in the first Harry Potter movie, The Philosopher’s Stone. The bridge was installed in 1908 and had
deteriorated beyond economic repair.

84-tonne

total steel weight

20 metre bridge

carries the 180-year-old railway

Delivered to site

via the rail network

Solution

Cleveland Bridge UK was appointed to fabricate and install the new 84-tonne steel bridge for Goathland Station. The full range of services offered by Cleveland Bridge meant the company was appointed main contractor, managing every aspect of the project to ensure timely completion, with minimal disruption to local people and national park visitors.

The design for the bridge comprised two main steel girders measuring 21.5 metres long and fitted with walkways, trimmer beams measuring ten metres long, and cross girders up to seven metres long. The design mirrors the classic styling of the original bridge, ensuring it blends in with its natural setting. The steel structure sits on concrete cill beams, which were also cast and installed by Cleveland Bridge.

Challenges

The first challenge was removing the existing 100-year-old bridge, for which no drawings existed. Due to restricted road access, all dismantling and removal work had
to be carried out using rail-mounted cranes – which was a first for Cleveland Bridge.

Because there was no suitable road access to the bridge site, every element of the new bridge had to be delivered by rail. There were only two rail lines into the site, so the sequence of deliveries had to be timed precisely to ensure the installation programme could proceed efficiently.

The bridge is located in a steep-sided valley with only a small area available adjacent to the site for steelwork assembly. The assembly sequence therefore needed to be carefully planned and executed to ensure it could be completed safely within the space available. The trial assembly at Darlington played an important role in ensuring the on-site assembly was completed successfully.

Outcome

Delivering and installing the bridge from the railway, rather than the road, helped to minimise any environmental impact on the national park or disruption to local people. The bridge installation was carried out during the winter when the railway was closed, so there was no impact on passenger services.

All works were completed on schedule, despite the harsh winter weather conditions on the North York Moors. Timely completion meant the bridge was ready well before the reopening of the line to passengers in the spring.

Cleveland Bridge UK have been a pleasure to work with on this project and their intrinsic involvement builds on the trust and professional partnership that we hope to continue for many years to come. We are pleased to be working with such an iconic bridge manufacturing and installation company, who are proud to be from the North of England, just like the railway itself.

Chris Price North Yorkshire Moors Railway

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