Falling Sands viaduct
Page updated on: 26/02/18
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Falling Sands Viaduct was completed in 1877, and years of water have gradually seeped into its seven arches, causing the brickwork to crack and erode, and the mortar joints to crumble. There’s already a 20 mph speed limit on trains crossing the Viaduct, and things can only get worse.
The SVR Charitable Trust has applied for a grant of approximately £1,000,000 from the Heritage Lottery funding. HLF will make a final decision in September 2018. If successful, there will be a major fund raising campaign to secure the further £275,000 needed for this major restoration project.
February 26th 2018 - PR: SVR’s bid to restore Falling Sands Viaduct wins Heritage Lottery Fund support
The Severn Valley Railway has received initial support* from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for its project to restore the Falling Sands Viaduct. Made possible by National Lottery players, the project aims to make essential repairs to the 141-year-old viaduct, and to promote education and community engagement, highlighting the part played by the SVR in the area’s social and industrial history.
The HLF has awarded development funding of £71,800 to help the SVR progress their plans to apply for a full grant later this year.
As well as ensuring the long-term viability of the viaduct itself, the project will engage a wider audience for the railway, encouraging an appreciation and understanding of local heritage and the fascinating world of structural engineering.
Falling Sands Viaduct stands half a mile from the SVR’s Kidderminster station, and is located close to the recently built Hoobrook Link Road and the Silverwoods residential and business development. Its impressive seven arches allow heritage trains to cross 64 feet above the river Stour and the Staffordshire and Worcestershire canal conservation area. More than two thirds of the SVR’s annual 250,000 annual visitors begin their journey in Kidderminster, and the viaduct is an essential link between the town and the rest of the 16-mile line, terminating at Bridgnorth. Closure of the viaduct would seriously compromise the operational viability of one of the UK’s leading heritage railways.
The SVR’s chairman Nick Paul spoke about the benefits the project will bring:
“Falling Sands Viaduct has been carrying trains across the river Stour since 1877, and significant repairs to its structure are badly needed. Thanks to the support of National Lottery players, once the work is completed in 2020, we’ll be able to lift the current speed restriction on our heritage trains, and look forward to at least another century of service from the viaduct. Restoring it will safeguard the continued operation of the SVR.
“Just as importantly, our volunteers and staff will gain heritage engineering skills, and we’ll be able to engage with our local community and schools. There’ll be local site interpretation, historical research and new exhibitions and educational activities. It’ll bring a sense of historical context for the new community that’s formed in the Silverwoods area, and beyond.”
In addition, on February 24th professional drone operators Monssi were in action taking shots of Falling Sands Viaduct. These will be used in a promotional film for the launch of our appeal to fund the viaduct’s restoration.
June 18th 2017
A boost for Falling Sands viaduct
The SVR Charitable Trust has secured financial backing from Heritage Lottery Fund to develop its bid for £1 million towards restoring Falling Sands. Things are looking good for this vital link in the SVR line. www.svrtrust.org.uk