Wednesday, 18 July 2018

Station revamp continues

THE old iron footbridge at Goring station has been torn down after more than 70 years.

THE old iron footbridge at Goring station has been torn down after more than 70 years.

Workers from demolition firm S Evans & Sons arrived at 4am on Friday with a 40ft crane that they placed on the eastern railway embankment off Gatehampton Road.

The contractor, which was working on Network Rail’s behalf, had spent several days beforehand levelling the ground.

The workmen cut the bridge into sections using welding torches then hoisted each one on to a flatbed lorry using the crane. The metal was then taken away for scrap.

The work took about 18 hours, during which time one lane of Gatehampton Road was shut and temporary traffic lights were in place.

An old building on the central platform will now be demolished and the bricks and tiles given to railway preservation enthusiasts.

Network Rail is installing a new footbridge at Goring as part of the electrification of the Great Western Main Line. A temporary crossing is currently in place. The old footbridge, which dated back to the late Thirties, was not tall enough to allow power cables to be suspended from the underside.

The new £1.2million footbridge, which is due to open in July, will include three passenger lifts connected by a covered walkway.

Meanwhile, Network Rail is continuing to erect a series of rigid steel gantries to hold the wires above the track as it passes through Goring and South Stoke.

Campaigners have complained that it will spoil the character of the area.

Emrhys Barrell, of Bridle Way, Goring, said: “It’s looking worse the more they build. I don’t understand why, at the very least, they can’t paint them green so that they blend in more.”

Henley MP John Howell has written to Network Rail asking why it can’t use thinner wire headspans instead of steel beams.

The company says wire headspans are an outdated technology and the gantries are safer to install and less likely to break down.

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