Revised 5 March 2016

Nigel Kirby (RVR Webmaster) writes:

This is now a major event, which justifies having its own dedicated gallery,

and the content is arranged in the order in which developments have occurred.

 

Look out for further updates

 

which I hope will continue to be provided by Network Rail Media Centre

 

to whom I owe a debt of gratitude

for their splendid coverage

and outstanding photography

not only for this event but elsewhere on the RVR website

 

12 Feb 2016

Railway between Carlisle and Appleby

to be closed for several months after major landslip

The line between Carlisle and Appleby is to be closed for several months

due to a major landslip involving an estimated 500,000 tonnes of earth.

 

The section, at Eden Brows, on the Settle to Carlisle line,

two miles north of Armathwaite,

was closed by Network Rail on Tuesday (9 February)

after aerial surveys and ground monitoring revealed

the embankment had moved so much it was no longer safe to run trains.

 

The area of land affected by the landslip is more than 130m long and 70m wide.



Network Rail's team of geotechnical specialists

are carrying out detailed ground investigations using borehole equipment.

The results of these comprehensive measurements will be used to design a lasting repair.

At this stage it is not possible to provide an accurate timescale

for the final repairs but it will take several months at least.

 



Martin Frobisher, Network Rail's Route Managing Director, said:

 

“An estimated 500,000 tonnes of earth have moved already

and the embankment is still moving.

That's 10 times the weight of the QE2 ocean liner when it is fully loaded.

The extent of this landslip means it is no longer safe for this section of railway to be open to trains.



“Our monitoring has detected a twist fault in the tracks caused by the ground movement.

The slip is accelerating, and it is not safe to run trains in this situation.

“Our engineers on site are undertaking detailed ground surveys

and this will enable us to design a permanent and lasting repair.



“Network Rail's contractors have already started to build access roads and compounds

so we can get our heavy machinery to where it is needed.

This will enable us to start construction work as soon as the design is finalised.


“The River Eden has severely eroded the base of the embankment.

This, combined with the recent repeated storms and saturated ground, caused the landslip.



“This is a vital rail link across the north of England,

and I am very aware of how important the railway is to the local community and local economy.

“I can assure everyone that we are doing all we can to design a lasting solution

and to reopen the railway as quickly as possible.

We will continue to work with Northern Rail to keep passengers and communities

informed of what we are doing and the progress we are making.”

 

 

Alex Hynes, Managing Director for Northern Rail comments:

 

“This is clearly another challenging and complex engineering project for Network Rail to tackle.

While their engineers assess the extent of the work,

we will continue to ensure our customers are kept on the move,

up-to-date with the latest information and that disruption is kept to a minimum.

 

“We will be operating train services between Leeds and Appleby

with a replacement bus service running between Appleby and Carlisle.

 

Timetable information will be available on our website.

Please check www.northernrail.org for the latest news.”



The latest travel information is also available at www.nationalrail.co.uk .

Machinery to build an access road at Appleby landslip

 

 

 

 

 

 

The start of vegatation clearance at the Appleby landslip

 

 

 

 

 

 

Appleby Landslip

 

 

 

 

 

 

Appleby Landslip

 

 

 

 

 

 

Appleby Landslip

 

24 February 2016

Team of 80 prepares for Repairs to Major Landslip

on the Settle to Carlisle Railway Line

 

Eden Gorge

Aerial Photo: Courtesy Network Rail

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ground investigation work taking place at Eden Brows

 

A team of 80 people from Network Rail, including geotechnical and engineering experts,

are carrying out extensive preparatory work

ahead of repairs to a 500,000 tonne landslip on the Settle to Carlisle railway line.

 

Network Rail is examining all possible long-term solutions to the problem

– a challenge made doubly complex by the landslip's size,

the fact it's still moving and its inaccessible location.

 

On the ground at Eden Brows, the scene of the slip,

40 of the orange army are building access roads across farmland,

setting up a site compound, removing vegetation and taking soil samples

to fully understand the underlying ground conditions.

 

The affected section of embankment, two miles north of Armathwaite,

is more than 130m long and 70m wide.

 

Some 500,000 tonnes of earth is still moving down one side of the Eden Gorge

towards the River Eden.

 

The much-loved Settle to Carlisle line is likely to remain closed north of Appleby

for several months,

 

but, once a single engineering solution is finalised,

this preparatory work will enable a swift start to repairs.

 

 

Site access road being built

 

Rhiannon Price, Network Rail Project Manager, said:

 

"Around 500,000 tonnes of earth in the embankment supporting the railway

is still on the move downhill towards the River Eden.

 

"Since our monitoring systems detected significant movement on 9 February,

our geo-technical and engineering experts have been considering all the possible repair options.

 

We have not yet agreed on the best final engineering solution

but we hope to have that soon."

 

 

Richard Morris, Chairman of the Friends of the Settle Carlisle Line, said:

 

"This iconic line goes through some of the most beautiful landscape in Britain - not least the Eden Gorge.

It is also of national strategic importance.

 

There is a big problem for Network Rail at Eden Brows.

 

We recognise the scale of the problem

and the time it is likely to take to fix it.

 

We are working closely with Network Rail to achieve the very best outcome."

 

 

Northern Rail is operating trains between Leeds and Appleby

and replacement bus services between Appleby and Carlisle.

 

 

Alex Hynes, Managing Director for Northern Rail, said:

 

"This is clearly another challenging and complex engineering project for Network Rail to tackle.

While Network Rail engineers assess the extent of the work,

we are working to keep our customers on the move and up to date with the latest travel information.

 

"We are focused on maintaining a reliable service for the customers we serve around Armathwaite

and keeping local businesses and communities connected with nearby towns and cities.

 

"We are operating train services between Leeds and Appleby,

with a replacement bus service running between Appleby and Carlisle.

Timetable information is available on our website and from National Rail Enquiries.

 

Please check www.northernrail.org/settlecarlisle for the latest news."

 

Eden Brows Landslip

 

 

3 March 2016

Repair Solution Agreed for Settle to Carlisle Railway Land Slip

Eden Brows Repair Diagram

Network Rail engineers have agreed a plan to repair a 500,000-tonne land slip

which has forced closure of part of the much-loved Settle to Carlisle railway line.

 

The repairs at Eden Brows, near Armathwaite, Cumbria, will involve building a structure

underneath the affected section of railway to support it.

 

The project, expected to take many months,

will also involve major earthworks to stabilise the embankment.

 

It is not clear at this stage precisely how long this work will take due to the scale of the slip,

the fact the earth is still moving and the inaccessibility of its location.

 

Northern Rail customers, including UK and overseas tourists,

are currently travelling on train services operating between Leeds and Appleby,

 

which remains open for business,

but on replacement bus services between Appleby and Carlisle.

 

The line between Appleby and Carlisle was closed on 9 February

after Network Rail's aerial and ground surveillance detected that

a 130-metre-by-70-metre section of the Eden gorge embankment,

below the railway and above the River Eden

at Eden Brows near Armathwaite, was giving way.

 

Since then 80 engineers and geotechnical experts - half in an office, half on site

- have been assessing the magnitude of the problem

and have worked to agree a single engineering solution.

Aerial View of Eden Brows site

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rhiannon Price, Network Rail's Project Manager for the Eden Brows repairs, said:

 

“We have carefully considered many repair options and we are satisfied the one we're going with is the best.

“Our aim is to do a thorough job that leaves the Settle to Carlisle Railway Line in better shape than it was before this land slip.

As well as tackling this problem, we intend to bring forward other, less major jobs we have earmarked on the shut section of line.

 

“We are acutely mindful of the impact on communities served by this line,

including businesses reliant on tourist trade.

We are working to fix this slip as quickly as possible.”

 

Between 4.30pm and 7.00pm on Thursday 3 March, Network Rail and train operator Northern Rail

hosted a public drop-in event in Appleby station waiting room.

This was an opportunity for local people to ask questions

and find out the latest information from the Eden Brows task force team.

 

Over Thursday 3 March and Friday 4 March, Network Rail staff,

supported by members of the Friends of Settle Carlisle Line group,

will be on a two-day walk-about in the communities affected by this closure,

including Appleby, Lazonby, Kirkoswald, Armathwaite and Langwathby.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Building Access Road at Eden Brows Land Slip site

 

 

 

 

 

 

Soil Condition Tester abseiling down the 70-metre high Eden Brows embankment

 

 

 

 

 

 

Geo-technical Engineer at Eden Brows

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our contractors, carrying out preparatory work, ahead of the repairs at Eden Brows

 

 

 

 

 

 

Alex Hynes, Managing Director for Northern Rail, said:

“It's clear from the extent of the repair needed at Eden Brows that

this landslip is indeed an exceptional incident.

 

“We will continue to operate trains between Leeds and Appleby

and look at more options to help keep our customers

and the local communities around the affected area connected.”

 

Eden Brows site - the Ground is still moving

 

 

 

 

 

 

Aerial View of Eden Brows site

 

 

 

 

 

 

Richard Morris, Chairman of the Friends of the Settle Carlisle Line, said:

 

"We are working closely with Network Rail to get the very best of outcomes for this very special railway line.

This is an enormous job and we do appreciate what is being done - and how long it is likely to take.

 

“Our volunteers will be working with Northern Rail

to ensure passengers can still enjoy

the spectacular section of line from Leeds as far as Appleby

which is very much open for 'business as usual' as the tourist season approaches."

 

River Eden between Lazonby and Kirkoswald

 

 

 

 

 

 

Armathwaite Station

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eden Gorge

Aerial Photo: Courtesy Network Rail

To keep up to date on this issue:

 

The repair work: www.networkrail.co.uk/carlisle

 

Train / Replacement Bus Timetables: www.northernrail.org/settlecarlisle