Following on from the award of the Outline Planning Consent in November 2019, work has been continuing in the background to progress the Trust's aspiration of putting sidings and a building on the Somervale land for the maintenance of the railways rolling stock. The impact of Covid, together with the Heritage Lottery Fund canceling all applications for funding that had been submitted in 2020 has delayed progress.
The Trust has used the intervening period wisely to assess other locations for a maintenance facility and an area of land off Tunnel Lane is now the preferred location. However, the Trust still intends to build one or two sidings on Somervale to permit the relocation of rolling stock from the station platforms and the goods yard.
In preparation for a full planning application to be submitted for sidings on the Somervale’ site, the Trust welcomed engineers from Geotechnics and Mott MacDonald this week to undertake geotechnical ground investigation surveys.
Once the surveys are completed and soil samples analysed, the Trust will then be in an informed position to understand exactly how many sidings together with exactly where on Somervale these can be located and finalise the track design.
In order to make the correct decisions and spend Trust money wisely it's imperative that the Trust has detailed information about the type of land, its stability and load-bearing capacity if sidings holding railway rolling stock are built on this land, geotechnical surveys will provide this information.
These surveys are costing a substantial amount of money, however the Trust view is that this is money wisely spent and will significantly reduce the risks of any future subsidence or stability issues on this land.
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Any questions relating to this project, please email [email protected]