Local stonemasons begin restoration of historic Lothianbridge Viaduct
A Midlothian stonemasonry company is to undertake the restoration of the 19th century Lothianbridge Viaduct before it takes centre stage once again to service the new Borders Railway line.
Forth Stone, based in Bonnyrigg, will oversee the masonry repair and repointing works of the viaduct, which includes the replacement of defective masonry dressings, brickwork arch repairs, as well as repointing works.
Given the structure’s historic significance, they will be employing a number of traditional masonry repair techniques which includes repointing, to the replacement of defective sandstone units.
In recent months the viaduct has been used to transport construction materials to help reduce construction traffic on the busy A7.
The restoration of the historic viaduct comes as works progress at nearby Hardengreen and Gore Glen to make way for the construction of new bridges.
Hugh Wark, Project Director, Network Rail, said:
“The Lothianbridge Viaduct is one of the largest structures we are working on along the new route. Although the structure has been in existence for over 160 years, transported many tonnes of passengers and freight, then lay dormant for almost 50 years, it is still surprisingly sound and requires very little restoration for its age. It really goes to show how well built it is!
“Working with local contractors to build the line is important to us, especially so when we require specialist skills to help restore such a historic structure like the viaduct.”
Martin Vevers, Managing Director at Forth Stone, said: “As a local contractor we are delighted to have been awarded this work package to restore such an iconic structure and help bring the new railway to life. It’s an exciting and challenging project which will enhance the transport system for the people of Midlothian and beyond.”
Forth Stone will also be working on a number of other stone structures along the Borders Railway route as works progress.