Network Rail engineers have successfully stabilised and widened a mile-long embankment on the East Suffolk Line, after fears that the top was slipping away.
Due to the collapsing embankment, the vital signalling equipment and signage were at risk of gradually falling down the bank, thus affecting the stability and reliable running of services along the line.
This resiliency project has seen a team of engineers conducting maintenance and rejuvenation works throughout a period of 13 consecutive days from Saturday 25th March to Thursday 6th April, resulting in passenger disruptions with bus replacement services replacing the trains between Ipswich and Saxmundham.
Mark Walker, Network Rail Anglia route infrastructure engineer, said:
“We’re really sorry that passengers had their journeys disrupted over 13 consecutive days, but we needed extended access to the railway to stabilise this steep, high embankment and avoid sudden disruption or closures. We’ll be back in August to do much-needed track replacement on top of the embankment, which is also crucial to keeping trains on time. We are building an East Suffolk Line that is fit for the future.”
Further improvements to be implemented following this stabilisation will see the delivery of a footpath for railway colleagues upon the embankment, improving access for further maintenance works.
These stabilisation works will now accommodate a further project to replace worn-out track atop of the embankment, a project which is scheduled to be conducted over a 10-day period between 16th-25th August, seeing further bus replacement services.
Jamie Burles, Greater Anglia managing director, said:
“I’d like to thank passengers for bearing with us during this improvement work, which will help us to continue operating a punctual train service along the East Suffolk Line. Our new trains are already providing a very good service on the route and this engineering work will help ensure we can continue to deliver high standards of performance on a consistent basis and provide a more comfortable journey for passengers.”
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