Home Electrification Work on reconnecting the line to Levenmouth gets underway

Work on reconnecting the line to Levenmouth gets underway

The first phase of work which will lead to the reinstatement of passenger services to Leven will begin shortly.

The first stage of the project, which will see the reinstatement of 19 single-track-kilometres of railway and two new modern accessible stations for the east of Fife, will include vegetation clearance and site survey and geological investigations.

Ahead of work starting, Network Rail has undertaken all necessary environmental and ecological surveys. Where any species have been identified, appropriate methods of working are in place to safeguard species, roosts and habitats of value.

The equipment which will be used to clear the vegetation will include chainsaws, and chipping machines as well as plant and machinery. This phase of work will also include surveying, drilling boreholes, sampling ballast and extracting core samples to assess the condition of the ground under the railway. A variety of equipment including boring rigs, and drills will be used all along the line with work ongoing until early 2021.

The Levenmouth line in September 2020, badly needing some vegetation clearance.

Graeme Stewart of Network Rail’s Levenmouth project team said: “Although still at a very early stage, it is fantastic to see work happening literally preparing the ground and to inform the design of the line.

“We have been working on developing a range of options which will define what the project looks like and how it is delivered and, as part of this, we have been meeting with and listening to local groups and organisations in the area.

“The development and delivery of the project will be in discreet phases with the first visible work; removal of vegetation to enable site and geological investigation SI/GI the start of a process which will culminate on the community once again having access to the mainline rail network.

 “As well as the promise of better connectivity this scale of investment to improve our transport infrastructure will help to deliver benefits to the economy. It will act as an enabler for growth, provide better access to employment and education opportunities and expanded social and leisure options for people all across the area.”

As part of the Scottish Government’s rail decarbonisation agenda, the line will also be prepared for future electrification.

Nigel Wordsworth BSc(Hons) MCIJhttp://therailengineer.com

SPECIALIST AREAS Rolling stock, mechanical equipment, project reports, executive interviews


Nigel Wordsworth graduated with an honours degree in Mechanical Engineering from Nottingham University, after which he joined the American aerospace and industrial fastener group SPS Technologies. After a short time at the research laboratories in Pennsylvania, USA, Nigel became responsible for applications engineering to industry in the UK and Western Europe. At this time he advised on various engineering projects, from Formula 1 to machine tools, including a particularly problematic area of bogie design for the HST.

A move to the power generation and offshore oil supply sector followed as Nigel became director of Entwistle-Sandiacre, a subsidiary of the Australian-owned group Aurora plc. At the same time, Nigel spent ten years as a Technical Commissioner with the RAC Motor Sports Association, responsible for drafting and enforcing technical regulations for national and international motor racing series.

Joining Rail Engineer in 2008, Nigel’s first assignment was a report on new three-dimensional mobile mapping and surveying equipment, swiftly followed by a look at vegetation control machinery. He continues to write on a variety of topics for most issues.

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