We are protecting the railway line for passengers and the people of Dawlish

In June 2019 work began on a new, larger sea wall that will protect the railway and the town for the next 100 years.

Train running along the Dawlish sea wall

The new wall will cost £80million and be delivered in two phases. The first phase, which runs for approximately 400m from Colonnade underpass, west of Dawlish station, to Boat Cove  has now been built, ensuring that this section of railway is more resilient for future generations. Installation of fencing, lighting, seating and cosmetic work will be carried out throughout the summer and will be completed later in 2020.

Our plans for section two, which runs for 415m between Coastguards and Colonnade breakwaters, have now been approved.  We hope to start work later in 2020 and construction will take around two years to complete.   

How did we get here?

In February 2014, a devastating storm struck Dawlish leaving just a swing bridge of rails behind, severing the whole of the South West peninsula off from the rest of the UK and costing millions of pounds to put right.

Remarkably 300 Network Rail staff and contractors managed to restore the rail link in just eight weeks by repairing the sea wall and replacing the track and foundations with 6,000 tonnes of concrete and 150 tonnes of steel.

Five years on since we reopened Dawlish

Download our FAQs

Frequently asked questions
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2020 newsletters

Newsletter – August 2020
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Newsletter – June 2020
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Newsletter – April 2020
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2019 newsletters

Newsletter – December 2019
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Newsletter – November 2019
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Newsletter – October 2019
3 MB
Newsletter – July 2019
589 KB
Newsletter – 24 June 2019
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Newsletter – 10 June 2019
613 KB
Newsletter – May 2019
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Contact us

Visit our contact us page, call our 24-hour national helpline on 03457 11 41 41 or you can contact us on Twitter at @SouthWestRRP