Monday, March 24, 2014
Staff work flat out to reopen the popular storm-ravaged tourist attraction in record time
Seaton Tramway is back on track after devastating floods brought the popular tourist attraction to a halt.
Storms on Valentine’s Day washed away about a quarter of a mile of the track, preventing the popular tourist attraction reopening for half term
But Against all the odds the tramway team has overcome huge physical hurdles to repair the damage in record time.
Managing Director, Jenny Nunn, said they had been horrified to discover the devastation that had been caused by a combination of high winds, tides and abnormal river levels just hours before the line was due to open for the February school break.
Not only did they have to suspend the service to visitors but had the added problem of having to work from flooded offices.
“But unlike the poor people on the Somerset Levels, at least we had warm, dry houses to go home to,” she said.
But a massive effort by staff and contractors - Axminster Excavators – means the full daily service will resume on Saturday March 29.
Much like the line tat the main line at Dawlish, parts of the damaged rail and track were salvaged and removed for diggers and rollers to access and level the site. In total over 600 tonnes of fill and ballast were brought in by road and then transported along the line to the site of the damage, compacted and then the track relayed and packed on top.
Mrs Nunn added: “It seems difficult to comprehend that, what the storm took away in a matter of hours, has taken six weeks to put back and even now work will continue after we re-open to ensure the track can withstand any future incidents like this. Now we’re looking forward to getting back to the real job which is running a tramway and welcoming visitors from far and wide to take this unique trip along this much-loved route by the River Axe.”