Repairs planned on Royal Border Bridge in Berwick

Repairs are being planned on the historic Royal Border Bridge spanning the River Tweed in Berwick.

Tuesday, 26th October 2021, 1:27 pm

Network Rail has submitted a planning application to Northumberland County Council seeking permission to carry out the works on the Grade 1 listed viaduct.

A variety of masonry, brickwork and crack stitching repairs are planned to preserve a structure designed by Robert Stephenson and opened by Queen Victoria in 1850.

A report with the application states: ‘Following on from bridge inspections and high-definition drone surveys a number of defects were found in the bridge that require repair.

The Royal Border Bridge in Berwick.

‘These defects are primarily to the masonry works and require repairs and refurbishment to ensure that they do not extend and cause more significant issues.

‘The works will not have a detrimental impact upon the structure and will improve its appearance, long-term resilience and ensure that it is maintained in a good state of repair.’

As part of the works, it is also planned to repaint the steelwork with the aim to achieve a 30-year maintenance free period.

Cllr Catherine Seymour, member for Berwick North on Northumberland County Council, said: "These crucial masonry repairs and refurbishment works to the Royal Border Bridge are something I have been looking forward to being done.

"This is an important 1850 Grade 1 listed bridge connecting the railway between London and Edinburgh with its spectacular views through Berwick. To watch the many trains on their journeys on this magnificent structure is striking and a sight to behold."

Before the bridge was built, the journey between stations at Berwick and Tweedmouth on either side of the river was undertaken by a horse drawn coach.

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