Network Rail starts work tonight to build a temporary railway station on the north side of the River Derwent at Workington to ease the access problems the people of the town are experiencing following the floods.
In the last 24hrs the company has identified a site for a new temporary station that could help alleviate some of the problems being experienced by the residents of Workington and the surrounding villages. The new station will be built on waste-land just over ½ mile to the north of the existing station, reconnecting the two halves of the town that have been cut off following flood damage to the footbridges and road bridges in the area.
Robin Gisby, director operations and customer services said: “We have a wealth of experience and engineering expertise that we felt should be put at the disposal of the Cumbrian authorities. Our people will work round the clock to build a temporary rail station, north of the river, to help re-connect the town and ease people’s travel problems.”
Network Rail has agreed a two-year lease of land owned by Allerdale Borough Council off the A596 immediately north of St Helens Business Park, opposite the Plaza Cinema. The two-platform station, linked by a footbridge, will have lighting, a waiting room and a gravel car park, and will be built and ready for its first passengers by the weekend.
Jo Kaye, route director, said: “Through aerial surveys we identified several potential sites for a temporary station. The council, despite being under considerable pressure, worked with us to quickly identify the best solution and a site was chosen. Work will start tonight and we will have the station open just as soon as we can.”
Network Rail has also had its own structures engineers examining rail bridges throughout the county and all have been passed as safe enabling a normal train service to run.
As one of the UK’s biggest engineering companies with extensive experience in finding and delivering engineering solutions in very short time-frames, the company has offered Cumbria County Council its expertise and resources in structures management to help with the onerous task the council faces examining its 1,800 bridges. The council was also offered future resources to help the re-building efforts.
Transport Minister Sadiq Khan said: “I would like to commend Network Rail for the quick work they are doing here and I’m sure it will help the people of Workington.”