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Network Rail to replace two ageing railway bridges in Birchington

Work to replace two ageing railway bridges in Thanet will be carried out over a single weekend to minimise disruption, says Network Rail.

Engineers aim to instal the new bridges just a few miles apart in Minnis Road and over Creek River in Birchington on June 12 and 13.

The Minnis Road bridge in Birchington (47333945)
The Minnis Road bridge in Birchington (47333945)

The existing structures are said to have reached the end of their working lives and train speed restrictions have had to be put in place for safety reasons.

Network Rail’s route director for Kent, Fiona Taylor, said: "There is never a good time to close the railway so we are doing everything we can to replace both bridges over a single weekend, minimising disruption for road and rail users."

But she says the new bridges will provide smoother more reliable journeys for trains.

Pedestrian access under the railway at Minnis Road will be closed during the weekend of June 12 and a minibus service will be provided between both sides of the bridge.

A bus replacement service will operate between Birchington and Herne Bay stations, ensuring passengers can still reach their destinations along the Chatham mainline.

The Creek River bridge near Birchington (47334066)
The Creek River bridge near Birchington (47334066)

To minimise the length of time the railway needs to be closed, the new bridge decks have been prefabricated in Nottingham and will be transported to site by road.

Preparation for the works is already underway and the removal and installation of the bridges will be carried out using two large road mobile cranes.

After the bridge decks have been lifted into place, the railway will be rebuilt on top and, once operational, the speed restrictions in the area will be lifted.

Passengers planning to travel during this time are advised to check their journeys at www.nationalrail.co.uk.

Read more: All the latest news from Thanet

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