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Author Topic: Lynton and Barnstaple Railway appeal: Bratton Fleming station back on the market  (Read 1890 times)
Umberleigh
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« Reply #30 on: June 25, 2020, 02:06:52 pm »

If Meldon viaduct is beyond repair then from my memory of the site it is feasible to build a new viaduct on the Dartmoor side of the existing structure. It will be costly, but then building a new downstream viaduct for Barnstaple wasn't cheap either (never mind HS2).
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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #31 on: June 25, 2020, 02:54:34 pm »

Not so long ago, as I remember it, Ribblehead viaduct was beyond economic repair...
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TonyK
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« Reply #32 on: June 26, 2020, 07:50:17 pm »

All viaducts are beyond repair until someone decides to use them again. The one at Pill went from crumbling ruin to right as rain for £100,000 if memory serves, when the Portbury Dock line was opened.
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ellendune
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« Reply #33 on: June 27, 2020, 08:56:56 am »

All viaducts are beyond repair until someone decides to use them again. The one at Pill went from crumbling ruin to right as rain for £100,000 if memory serves, when the Portbury Dock line was opened.

The examples quoted so far are all masonry, whereas Meldon on is made from iron (or steel?).  I can think of another non-masonry one (Barmouth) but not an iron one.
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grahame
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« Reply #34 on: June 27, 2020, 10:07:02 am »

All viaducts are beyond repair until someone decides to use them again. The one at Pill went from crumbling ruin to right as rain for £100,000 if memory serves, when the Portbury Dock line was opened.

The examples quoted so far are all masonry, whereas Meldon on is made from iron (or steel?).  I can think of another non-masonry one (Barmouth) but not an iron one.

Bridges like the Royal Albert Bridge at Saltash have wrought iron spans (or has the material been changed over the years) and I think the central pier is at least partly metal.
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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #35 on: June 27, 2020, 11:09:48 am »

The fact that Meldon Viaduct has not been demolished for safety reasons suggests that it has a certain level of structural integrity. Any structure that hasn't fallen down can be repaired; whether that repair makes economic sense is another matter.

Ashton Swingbridge in Bristol is a riveted steel structure which had no maintenance for at least 50 years. If you'd asked me a couple of years ago whether it could be repaired I would have guessed not; you could put your fist through the rust holes in the plate girders. It is now fully restored and carries a MetroBus route and cycle path...
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TonyK
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« Reply #36 on: June 27, 2020, 03:04:38 pm »


Ashton Swingbridge in Bristol is a riveted steel structure which had no maintenance for at least 50 years. If you'd asked me a couple of years ago whether it could be repaired I would have guessed not; you could put your fist through the rust holes in the plate girders. It is now fully restored and carries a MetroBus route and cycle path...

... although it does demonstrate another traditional issue, that of starting work, drilling the first hole, then going back to the commissioning body to say "It's a lot worse than we thought." It still scrubbed up a lot less expensively than building a replacement would have been. Plus it's not seeing anything like as much use as was envisaged. Always a danger.

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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #37 on: June 27, 2020, 05:35:53 pm »

...Plus it's not seeing anything like as much use as was envisaged...

There may be fewer buses than anticipated, but an awful lot of bicycles use it.

Cyclists have recently got into the habit of using the guideway, perhaps to socially distance themselves from the pedestrians who tend to fill the cycle path. The other day I saw a cyclist who was evidently shocked to meet a bus coming the other way. If it wasn't for the fact that the buses have to slow down to a crawl to use the guideway, he might not have been able to pull his bicycle out of the way in time...
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TonyK
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« Reply #38 on: June 29, 2020, 11:03:57 am »


Cyclists have recently got into the habit of using the guideway, perhaps to socially distance themselves from the pedestrians who tend to fill the cycle path. The other day I saw a cyclist who was evidently shocked to meet a bus coming the other way. If it wasn't for the fact that the buses have to slow down to a crawl to use the guideway, he might not have been able to pull his bicycle out of the way in time...

Sadly, a cyclist died on the Cambridgeshire misguided busway after making a similar misjudgement. The Bristol one is likely to get a lot busier now, with the airport reopening. The smaller supplementary local service that also uses the carbon saving airport route seems to have reopened with a limited 3 bus per hour service, 0600 to 1900 weekdays only.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2020, 02:05:01 pm by TonyK » Logged

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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #39 on: June 29, 2020, 12:53:27 pm »


Cyclists have recently got into the habit of using the guideway, perhaps to socially distance themselves from the pedestrians who tend to fill the cycle path. The other day I saw a cyclist who was evidently shocked to meet a bus coming the other way. If it wasn't for the fact that the buses have to slow down to a crawl to use the guideway, he might not have been able to pull his bicycle out of the way in time...

Sadly, a cyclist dies on the Cambridgeshire misguided busway after making a similar misjudgement. The Bristol one is likely to get a lot busier now, with the airport reopening. The smaller supplementary local service that also uses the carbon saving airport route seems to have reopened with a limited 3 bus per hour service, 0600 to 1900 weekdays only.

Presumably this story, from May 2019, relates to a different incident:

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Cambridge cyclist died in head-on crash after clipping the kerb that separated him from guided busway

Victimís brother calls for more separation between buses and path

An inquest has heard that Cambridge cyclist Steve Moir died in a head-on crash with a bus when he clipped the kerb separating him from a guided busway while overtaking pedestrians. Ruling the death accidental, coroner Simon Milburn heard the driver "could not avoid" him.
Source: road.cc

You have to feel for the bus driver, who might have been able to swerve to avoid the cyclist if the bus had been on a normal road.

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TonyK
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« Reply #40 on: June 29, 2020, 02:06:43 pm »


Presumably this story, from May 2019, relates to a different incident:

You have to feel for the bus driver, who might have been able to swerve to avoid the cyclist if the bus had been on a normal road.

My mistake - I read a Chinese whisper version. I agree regarding the bus driver.
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WSW Frome
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« Reply #41 on: June 30, 2020, 11:47:15 am »

I had a very good look at Meldon Viaduct about 3 years ago. It certainly looked to be in remarkably good condition. Although there have been various stories over the years that it would need major work to make it suitable for a revived train service. Does this depend on the route being single or double track?

I have always assumed the viaduct was steel and of relatively modern design. So I thought I had better check and no it is of wrought and cast iron and built as the original structure(s) in 1874/1878. It was built in two single track versions side by side and joined up! One can see it has been strengthened at various times with additional trusses. As likely some of this was a wartime measure to carry heavier traffic but other work was done during the BR period. So clearly there is scope for repair or modifications to the structure.
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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #42 on: June 30, 2020, 12:26:56 pm »

There's a channel on YouTube which follows the story of Leo Sampson Goolden, who is restoring the 1909 wooden sailing yacht Tally Ho. To date Leo has replaced the keel, frames, knees, floors, beamshelves, bilge stringers, deck structure, stern post and stem. The only original part that has been kept to date is a section of the original transom. I suspect that Leo may have had the benefit of a classical education, because he devoted an entire episode of his YouTube show to sharing his understanding of the Ship of Theseus. You or I might have referred to the tale of the farmer's broom...

But to paraphrase Leo:

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There is no Meldon Viaduct. The idea of a viaduct or a bridge is just a human construct, just a label that we give to a collection of pieces that are arranged in a certain way. If you change the things that the overall object is made of then as long as the human mind can conceive of it as the same thing then that is as close as you can get to being the same thing.

To look at this another way, when GWR locomotive 111 The Great Bear emerged from its general repairs in 1924 with a new name and slightly fewer wheels, the accountants were presumably happy to move a few beans out of their 'maintenance' pot rather than their 'new construction' pot (in those days, one has to assume, maintenance was considered a worthwhile activity). Little else other than the number plates was actually re-used. Nowadays, it seems we satisfy the accountants (and politicians) by pretending that maintenance is actually something worth getting excited about!
« Last Edit: June 30, 2020, 12:35:39 pm by Red Squirrel » Logged
Robin Summerhill
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« Reply #43 on: June 30, 2020, 02:04:59 pm »

The fact that Meldon Viaduct has not been demolished for safety reasons suggests that it has a certain level of structural integrity. Any structure that hasn't fallen down can be repaired; whether that repair makes economic sense is another matter.

Another reason it hasn't been demolished may be (I think) that its  a Listed structure

I had a quick look on Google this morning to prove or disprove that,  but I couldn't find anything. Mind you I didn't spend that much time looking!
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TonyK
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« Reply #44 on: June 30, 2020, 02:53:07 pm »

Meldon Viaduct is a scheduled monument or Heritage Asset, under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979. I think that trumps listing in terms of protection.
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