In June we carried out essential maintenance at four sites between Gillingham and Yeovil Junction

In a nine day line closure from Saturday 13 to Sunday 21 June, engineers worked around the clock to provide a more reliable railway between Salisbury and Exeter.

Templecombe cutting

In December 2019 bad weather caused a landslip at a cutting between Templecombe and Sherborne. Temporary repairs were made to reopen the line but a speed restriction was imposed for the safety of passing trains.

Engineers returned to carry out a full repair during June’s line closure. They installed 1,500 soil nails surrounded by concrete to strengthen the cutting and reduce the risk of further landslips.

At the foot of the cutting a protective membrane was installed and walls of stone baskets were placed on top for extra resilience.

Following the successful repair, the speed restriction was lifted and trains are now able to travel between at normal speeds.

Gillingham track repair

At the same time as the Templecombe cutting repair, engineers also carried out repairs at a section of track near Gillingham.

At a site that has historically suffered from landslips, engineers strengthened the section’s embankment and installed around 400m of new track to improve reliability.

Sherborne and Templecombe station improvements

With the line closed and no trains running we also took the opportunity to carry out maintenance and improvement work at Sherborne and Templecombe stations.

At Sherborne we repaired the station building’s roof, redecorated the platform’s canopies, fixed platform lighting, removed a fallen tree and painted areas of the station building.

At Templecombe we repaired damage to the platform surfaces, replaced damaged fences and repaired the roof of the station building.

Crossing maintenance

We also carried out routine maintenance on two farm crossings between Sherborne and Yeovil Junction. Crossing surfaces were repaired and timbers and ballast were renewed.