UK’s Network Rail has reopened the storm-damaged section of the Cambrian Coast railway line from Barmouth to Harlech in Gwynedd following completion of a £10m repair programme.
The railway line remained closed since early January this year due to the widespread damage to infrastructure caused by winter storms and tidal surges. The worst affected site was at Llanaber, north of Barmouth.
Network Rail Wales route managing director Mark Langman said: "The scale of damage across the Cambrian Coast following the storms was unprecedented. There were multiple breaches of the sea defences and major damage to the railway infrastructure.
"I know how important the line is to the local economy and we were determined to re-open the line as soon as it was safe to do so."
The repair programme was completed two weeks ahead of schedule and involved huge repair services to the rail infrastructure and sea defences caused by the winter storms.
Work on the section of the railway line included removal of 40t of debris, reinstating 6,000 pieces of ‘rock armour’ for sea protection, more than 1,000 sleepers, 2,500t of ballast and installation of 1,400m of track.
In February, another section of the railway line from Machynlleth to Barmouth was opened. Repairs on the section between Harlech and Pwllheli are still underway.
In the next couple of months, Arriva Trains Wales will reduce some of the local fares on the line by 30% in order to boost rail travel.
Image: The Cambrian Coast railway line to Barmouth and Harlech has reopened. Photo: courtesy of Network Rail.