Iconic viaduct to be restored thanks to National Lottery money

Falling Sands Viaduct
The National Lottery Heritage Fund has awarded the Severn Valley Railway Charitable Trust nearly £854,000 to repair Falling Sands Viaduct, in the West Midlands, and to explore the railway’s early history.

The 142-year-old Falling Sands Viaduct is a key part of the Severn Valley Railway, a heritage railway that runs over 16 miles between Kidderminster and Bridgnorth. The viaduct which has been a local icon since its completion in 1877, has deteriorated over time.

Shelagh Paterson of the Severn Valley Railway Charitable Trust, explains: “Our iconic structure has suffered badly over the years, with water seeping deep inside it, causing cracks and erosion to the brickwork.”

Sharing the railway’s early history

As well as urgent repairs, the captivating heritage of Falling Sands Viaduct will be shared with the public thanks to National Lottery players.

Working with volunteers, apprentices, and local organisations, the project will tell the stories of those who built the railway as well as developing a range of activities to share their fascinating stories with visitors and locals.

Referring to the origins of Falling Sands Viaduct, Chris Haynes, a Severn Valley Railway volunteer, explains: “Its construction took so long to complete that many of the key people had died before it opened. We’ll be bringing all these stories to life so that our visitors get a real sense of what life was like for the Victorians who built the line, and for those who used it in the following decades.”

Repair work will commence in January 2020 and will be fully completed by the autumn.