Grand reopening of Bennerley Viaduct now delayed until next year

The eagerly-anticipated reopening of an iconic Awsworth viaduct after more than five decades has now been delayed until next year.

Friday, 5th November 2021, 10:33 am
The restoration work is taking a while longer than expected due to supply chain issues.

The third phase of the Bennerley Viaduct restoration is well underway, with decking and steps on the eastern end of the viaduct currently under construction.

But, as with many other civil engineering projects at the moment, supply chain issues mean that work hasn’t progressed as quickly as anticipated.

As a result the grand reopening of the landmark, which was expected to take place this autumn, has now been pushed back until spring next year.

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Volunteers undertaking environmental work at Bennerley Viaduct.

Kieran Lee, community engagement officer at Friends of Bennerley Viaduct, said it is only a small delay in the grand scheme of things.

He said: “The viaduct's owners, Railway Paths Ltd, will not be formally opening the viaduct this year.

“This will now take place in the late spring or early summer of 2022 when the viaduct will be looking at its best.

“It is a small delay but after 54 years of closure, amazing progress continues to be made.”

The disused railway viaduct, which is a Grade II listed structure dating back to 1877, straddles the Nottinghamshire-Derbyshire border near Awsworth.

In July 2019, planning consent was granted to bring the viaduct back into use as a walking and cycling trail and the project has so far had an investment of £1.4million from various backers including key funders The Railway Heritage Trust, the National Lottery Heritage Fund and Historic England.

The money is being pumped into transforming the area into a community asset and major tourist attraction.

Mr Lee added: “We are indebted to all the funders who are making the dream to re-open the viaduct a reality.

“It is a remarkable achievement for all concerned.”As construction work continues, volunteers are needed to help with clearing vegetation and making the area presentable.The next volunteer workday will be on Thursday, November 11, between 9.30am and 2pm.If you would like to become a volunteer and help with the environmental work, email [email protected]

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