Bris­tol boost: NR com­pletes Fil­ton track qua­dru­pling

Rail (UK) - - News - An­drew Ro­den Con­tribut­ing Writer [email protected]­me­ @AndyRo­den1

NET­WORK Rail’s qua­dru­pling of 4.5 miles of track from Bris­tol Tem­ple Meads to Fil­ton Abbey Wood was due to be com­pleted in the first week­end of De­cem­ber, fol­low­ing a three-week block­ade from Oc­to­ber 27-Novem­ber 18 and two sub­se­quent week­end clo­sures.

Fil­ton Abbey Wood sta­tion re­opened on time with its new fourth plat­form on Novem­ber 19. Ten units of switches and cross­ings were laid and all 13 units com­mis­sioned, the re­main­ing 5km of the to­tal 15km (9.5 miles) of plain line track was com­pleted, and track drainage was in­stalled along with sig­nalling and tele­coms sys­tems to sup­port the op­er­a­tional rail­way.

With the track laid and the sig­nalling com­mis­sioned for open­ing to traf­fic by Novem­ber 19, work on the fol­low­ing two week­ends in­volved weld­ing and tamp­ing the new track to in­crease the line speed from a tem­po­rary re­stric­tion of 50mph to its nor­mal 75mph by De­cem­ber 3.

Net­work Rail Project Man­ager Kate Trevor­row told RAIL that prepara­tory works be­fore the block­ade in­volved earth­works and lay­ing plain line on the free parts of the for­ma­tion.

When the four tracks were re­duced to two in the 1980s, around half of the route was on one side of the for­ma­tion, slew­ing to the other ac­cord­ing to track con­di­tion.

Dur­ing the block­ade, the new plain line was con­nected to the ex­ist­ing tracks, sig­nalling and telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions sys­tems in­stalled at Dr Days and Hor­field Junc­tions, and sig­nalling com­mis­sioned on the newly quadru­pled stretch. Ma­jor sig­nalling works in­volved the con­struc­tion of a new four-track sig­nal gantry and one two track can­tilevered struc­ture.

Speak­ing to RAIL just be­fore the fi­nal week­end of clo­sures to com­plete tamp­ing, Trevor­row said: “The Fil­ton qua­dru­pling will trans­form rail travel in Bris­tol. It re­moves a key bot­tle­neck by sep­a­rat­ing long-dis­tance and lo­cal trains and will in­crease ca­pac­ity and re­li­a­bil­ity in the area. The circa-£130 mil­lion project was com­pleted on time and on bud­get by a team of project man­agers, en­gi­neers and plan­ners in Net­work Rail and con­trac­tors in­clud­ing VINCI, Al­stom, Te­lent, Amey and Res­onate.”


Net­work Rail has com­pleted a project to re­turn the line through Fil­ton Abbey Wood (Bris­tol) to four tracks and add an ex­tra plat­form to the sta­tion’s three.

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