Network Rail strengthens relationship with Annan steel fabricator

M&S Engineering’s Annan facility, with the Dumfries Railway Station bridge built in a trial assembly
(Image: Network Rail)

A series of accessibility projects have strengthened Network Rail’s relationship with a family-run Annan steel fabricator.

M&S Engineering is currently fabricating steel for the new £3.6 million footbridge to be installed at Dumfries Railway Station, as well as the steel components for similar projects at Anniesland and Uddingston stations.

Dumfries Railway Station’s bridge was recently built in a trial assembly
(Image: Network Rail)

The work comes as part of the Access for All programme, which is a government-funded initiative which seeks to make travelling by train more inclusive for passengers by creating step-free access across station platforms.

M&S Engineering, which was established in 1992, first began working with Network Rail in 2012 during the delivery of an Access for All project at Perth Railway Station. The rail organisation said that the firm has since went on to earn its place as a preferred contractor for design, fabrication, and erection of steelwork packages.

Network Rail

Gary Jamieson, contracts manager at M&S Engineering, said, “We have [steel for] Uddingston painted in the workshop. We have the Dumfries footbridge and we have the Anniesland ramps and lift shafts.

“Having multiple projects on at the one time gives our guys a great deal of focus and we benefit from the continuity. To be able to cope with all three at once, programming is key. We ask our guys to step up, sometimes it is working extra hours but to be fair they have not let us down. They have all really done their bit.”

“What makes working on Access for All different to other projects we do is that you get a lot more interaction with the public. In terms of installation from our side, Access for All changes the landscape of the station overnight.

“These structures provide really good work for our guys and, for Dumfries station in particular, it is really interesting because it is local. The guys will be using that station in the near future, knowing that they have played their part in the bridge being made.”

Rod Hendry, site construction manager at Network Rail, added, “The Access for All projects we are delivering aim to make stations more easily accessible for those with reduced mobility, prams and luggage.

“In Scotland, Access for All schemes were completed at Croy and Johnstone stations in 2023, and Port Glasgow in February 2024. The schemes at Dumfries, Anniesland and Uddingston are due to be all finished by autumn 2024.”