This page shows photographs of the “Bridging the Gap” operation - the construction of a bridge across the Midland Main Line in Loughborough. This is the first, and the major, part of the works required to link the southern and northern parts of the preserved Great Central Railway.
Click here for a map of this area from Bing
Notes on using the Bing Map
The map linked to is the Ordnance Survey map.
To see an aerial photograph of the area covered by the map click on the tab labelled “Ordnance Survey” at top right of the screen and select “Aerial”.
When finished with the map click on the browser “Back” button till you return here.
The intention is to update this page as work on the bridge progresses.
9/4/17. Work has started next to Preci-Spark, on the south side of the Midland Main Line, with the original embankment being reduced. On the right is the Hermitage Brook.
9/4/17. Reducing the embankment has revealed the method of construction of the original GCR bridge abutment. The embankment on the north side can be seen beyond the fence to the right of the signals, 9/4/17.
16/4/17. On the south side of the Midland Mainline the old embankment has been greatly reduced, but still a couple of feet high has been left and is being covered with chippings. The old abutment
remains - will it be reused?
Passing is 66019 with a northbound Network Rail works train.
16/4/17. A piling auger has arrived and is positioned on the north side of the Midland Mainline ready to bore the holes for the piling.
16/4/17. Nearby, steel reinforcing assemblies for the concrete piles are being built up.
The original pile boring machine left soon after the last report on 16/4/17, and there was little change since then until a new pile boring machine arrived on 26/5/17. This larger machine is required because of the higher than expected water table, though this has increased the cost of the project — see http://www.gcrailway.co.uk/unify/. So work should restart soon.
28/5/17. The larger pile boring machine stands on the left inside the work compound on the north side of the Midland Mainline.
9/6/17. The pile boring machine stands aside while concrete is poured into a bored hole next to the north side of the Midland Main Line.
9/6/17. Concrete being poured into a pile hole next to the north side of the Midland Main Line.
23/6/17. After completing some of the piles on the north side, the pile boring machine was moved overnight to the south side.
6/8/17. Abutments are being built by forming walls from concrete sections around the piles, inserting reinforcing bars and then filling with ready-mix concrete. On the south side the new abutment is situated between the old GCR brick abutment and the Midland Main Line.
6/8/17. The bridge abutments are progressing where the piles were inserted.
10/8/17. Steel structures are being erected on the concrete foundations of the abutments.
For more information about “Bridging the Gap” visit the Great Central Railway site at http://www.gcrailway.co.uk/unify/.
© 2001-2017 Text and photographs copyright Nigel Tout, unless otherwise indicated.