The Anonymous Widower

Dancing With Cranes And A Bridge With Help From Lego

I just had to put a link to this article on Rail Engineer, which is entitled Scarborough Bridge – Monte Carlo Or Bust.

It describes how the bridge that takes the York Scarborough railway line over the River Ouse in the medieval heart of York, was replaced over the half-term weekend in February, at a cost of six million pounds. This Google Earth image shows the centre of York.



The bridge is the one at the left of the image, with the station below it.

It was choreographed to an amazing degree and used three enormous mobile cranes squeezed into the car park by the bridge on the north bank of the river. Luckily the wind and the weather were kind and the project was completed on time. Perhaps, the most strange aspect of the project is told in this paragraph.

And then we should take our hats off to team member Eamon McAuley who literally built the bridge single-handed…albeit in Lego. It was remarkably detailed – including the track layout and little orange men with chainsaws – and could be deconstructed and rebuilt to follow the lifting sequence. Sitting as a centrepiece in the conference room, it proved more useful than a PowerPoint when explaining the challenges to visitors and stakeholders.

Anybody who said engineering isn’t fun, should hang their head in shame.

March 31, 2015 Posted by | Travel | , , , | Leave a comment

The Bridges Of Berwick-upon-Tweed

I took these pictures as my train from Edinburgh to Newcastle crossed the border into England on the Royal Border Bridge.

The main bridge in the picture is the Royal Tweed Bridge with Berwick Bridge behind.

This Google Earth image shows the three major bridges in the area and Berwick-upon-Tweed station above the town.



Note how you can make out the arches of the railway viaduct in the image.

March 13, 2015 Posted by | World | , | 2 Comments

Work Starts On The Bridge At Highbury Corner

I walked past Highbury and Islington station this morning and it appears that work is starting on replacing the bridge.

The crossing has been moved away from the station, but the old Post Office hasn’t been demolished yet.

February 1, 2015 Posted by | Travel | , , | 3 Comments

London’s New Bridge

It’s not often that London gets a new bridge. But the swing bridge over Deptford Creek opened today.

They even closed it so, that I could walk over the creek.

January 19, 2015 Posted by | World | , | Leave a comment

The Party’s Over!

Network Rail and their engineers may have had problems at Kings Cross, but the new bridge at South Tottenham station on the Gospel Oak to Barking Line opened a few minutes before the previously published time of ten o’clock.

I was able to get the 09:45 train westwards from the station towards Gospel Oak.

I wonder how long it takes before a vandal puts some graffiti on the brand new bridge.

December 28, 2014 Posted by | Travel | , , , | Leave a comment

The Bridge Party Continues

There has been a lot of progress since I took the last pictures.

Rumour has it, that they’ve given the bridge to North Korea, in the hope it will help them realise that bridges are good things to build links between different views.

December 26, 2014 Posted by | Travel | , , | Leave a comment

What Is Happening At Highbury Corner?

Highbury Corner is a notorious junction, which I used to avoid when I drove, as it could often cause a lot of delay.

These pictures show barriers going up and the crossing outside Highbury and Islington station.

It would also appear that a new crossing is being built about fifty metres up Holloway Road. The guy in the paper shop told me that the main crossing will be closed and that the old Post Office will be demolished. I found this summary of the works here on the TfL web site. All the work is to replace a weak bridge and it says this about the old Post Office in particular.

The empty Post Office building needs to be demolished, and we expect to start work in the week beginning Monday 5 January 2015. The demolition work will be completed by March 2015.

We will make every effort to minimise the impact of noise and dust during the demolition.

The footpaths next to the old Post Office will remain open, although hoardings around the demolition site will make the footpaths narrower. This might create some crowding at busy times, impacting journeys in and out of the station.

In 2015, the main works to replace the bridge will begin.

I think it will be a good idea for pedestrians and drivers to avoid the area until 2017, when the article says that the bridge works will be complete.

The station is at a location where development would surely be worthwhile. Especially, if it put right all of the mistakes of the 1960s, which produced a Victoria Line station for the fit, agile and young. Below ground it’s a dump!

At least though it would appear that the western side of the roundabout will have reduced traffic levels and bus/Underground/Overground connections will be easier. The centre of the roundabout with its trees would also be opened up to the public.

My hopes for the bus/train interchange would include.

1. The 277 bus go right around to terminate in front of the station, ready to pick up passengers arriving at the station.

2. Easy interchange at the station from the 277 to either the 43 or the 271 to go north up Holloway Road towards Archway, Highgate and Barnet. At present you need to use two light-controlled crossings to cross two busy main roads, to affect the change.

3. The reverse journey on a southbound 43 or 271 to catch a 277 eastwards is probably more difficult, unless the buses cut through the western side of the roundabout.


But I think, I’m asking for too much!

I doubt though the development will be as grand as the original.

The Old Highbury and Islington Station

The Old Highbury and Islington Station

The entry on Wikipedia says this about the history of the station building.

The NLR station was damaged by a V-1 flying bomb on 27 June 1944, however, its main building remained in use until it was demolished in the 1960s during the building of the Victoria line. The original westbound platform buildings remain, as does a small part of the original entrance to the left of the present station entrance.

The Victoria Line might have had world leading automatic train operation when it opened, but most of the architecture and building of the stations, was some of the worst in the UK in the 1960s.

December 24, 2014 Posted by | Travel | , , , , | 2 Comments

VolkerFitzpatrick Are Having A Christmas Party At South Tottenham

The bridge at South Tottenham station, that carries the Gospel Oak to Barking Line over Tottenham High Road.

The road will be closed over Christmas and it looks it’ll be quite a party.

Note the large blue bridge in the pictures. If there is going to be a decent webcam, then this could be better Christmas television than most.

December 18, 2014 Posted by | Travel | , , , | 1 Comment

An Impressive Set Of Bridges

Rochester Bridge is a set of four bridges that carries the A2 road, the railway and various services over the River Medway.

I liked it a lot. But where was the information by the bridge, describing it for those that walked past?

November 26, 2014 Posted by | Travel | , | Leave a comment

Before Crossrail – The Wharncliffe Viaduct

Crossrail is a new railway from Reading in the West to Shenfield in the East.

But not everything is going to be brand new!

For example, the Grade 1 listed, Wharncliffe Viaduct, will be used to take the line over the River Brent, just as it has taken the Great Western Main Line since 1837.

Modifications are probably quite small as the current four lines are already electrified. Two of these will be used by Crossrail.

The viaduct ticks all the boxes on everybody’s lists.

  • It was designed by IK Brunel
  • It is Grade 1 Listed and is part of the submission to get the Great Western Railway declared a World Heritage Site.
  • Pevsner said “Few viaducts have such architectural panache” about this viaduct.
  • It is inhabited by a colony of bats.
  • The electrification of the bridge was carried out in a sympathetic manner.

But above all, it would appear it is up to the job for which it is to be used.

You have to admit, that the Victorians knew how to build with brick!

October 20, 2014 Posted by | Travel | , , , | Leave a comment


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