Last week the Railway was severed in two places. At Haworth top points, the old turnout, which has been out of use for some years, was removed and replaced and further down the line the well publicised major severance at Bridge 17 took place for the decking to receive serious attention, work which is going to last for two weeks.
A large gathering of hi-viz clad volunteer men and ladies (Margaret & Vanessa applying the female touch) had the old turnout lifted in good time and new timber sleepers laid to an easier alignment. Having installed the necessary rails to bring the main line into use without completing the turnout, three old rail lengths from north of the point were removed and new concrete sleepers installed to replace the life expired existing sleepers. Work, which will not disrupt the running of trains, will continue later to complete the turnout.
The photographs tell the whole story when the old points were taken out and a new turnout partly installed to return the line for use ready for the weekend’s services. The photos show the renewal using new timbers, chairs and rails and the replacement of three rail lengths of sleepers with concrete sleepers fitted with new chairs on the north side of the crossing, 72 sleepers in total. The week also saw the first Civil week since restoration to operation of the 10 ton Grafton crane which proved extremely useful.
Featured image: Ken Brindley. Photos: 1-8 Margaret Bonner, 9-10 Tom Kay
Meanwhile down at Bridge 17 the line was lifted and the ballast peeled back to expose the decking for the first time in many years. There are few people around that have seen this before and it gives an unusual insight to the construction of the bridge.
With the bridge cleared of railway material the area was cleaned up, old crushed and hardened material chipped way, ready for the contractors to step in this week to paint the decking with protective paint ready for the line to be re-laid. Next year the decking will again be uncovered and a waterproof covering applied to fully protect the bridge for many more years to come. Unfortunately, time restraints meant that the waterproofing has to wait until next year but it is unlikely to disrupt train services as the work can be fitted into a 5 day possession.
Photos: Robin Lush