Grit blasting work underway on £7.5m Forth Bridge project

Network Rail

WORK to refurbish and repaint the North Queensferry approach span to the Forth Bridge is progressing, Network Rail has revealed.

First commencing in February 2021, the project is now at the stage of grit blasting to remove layers of old paint from the North Queensferry approach to the 130-year-old structure.

Engineers from main contractor Balfour Beatty, who are working in a bespoke encapsulated zone, will then repaint the spans using the iconic Forth Bridge red colour – a job which Network Rail said will not be required again for up to three decades.

Train services have not been disrupted during the work, which form part of Network Rail’s five-year, £4 billion programme of investment in Scotland’s railway between 2019 and 2024.

Mark Wilson, project manager at Network Rail, said, “This is an exciting milestone in our project to refurbish the north approach span to the world famous Forth Bridge. We have planned these works carefully to try and minimise possible disruption to the local community and railway users. Our investment in this work will not only ensure the bridge remains one of the most recognisable structures in the world but will be crucial in our efforts to maintain a safe and reliable railway for years to come.

“A key element to the work has been the engagement with the North Queensferry community which sits underneath the north approach and we would like to thank the community for their patience and understanding during this essential work.”

Network Rail said that the project is expected to be completed in early 2022.