THE BUILDING OF BARNA RAILWAY

"Part 1- Pond construction" 

   

 

 

 

 

During the planning and design stage of Barna Railway it was decided that the railway should have four key features, these were a station, a tunnel, a pond and a bridge. Of these the pond would be the most difficult to construct.

This photograph, taken in February 2007,  shows the location where the pond and bridge would be built.

 A gap was left under the track bed to allow the pond to be dug out and built during the Summer of 2007.

The trains were able to run at all times even during construction as the track bed was never moved.

 

Having two young children it was quickly decided that a large deep pond was not a good idea. The pond would be more of a "water feature" with shallow water for safety and maybe a small waterfall. The plans were drawn up and we waited for the Summer to come.......!

 

 The fine weather arrived in early May and the work commenced.

 

The first job was to build a retaining wall, using old railway sleepers to protect the shed and fence from damage.

 

The remaining paving slabs were lifted and the pond shape was dug out. This was done with the help of two local builders.  

Most of the digging was easy but the deepest part of the water feature was located directly under the bridge, which made digging it out a little more difficult.

 

This deep hole is for a small plastic water tank, this will hold a sufficient quantity of   water to operate the waterfall and to allow the pump to be hidden out of sight.

  

Once the shape was dug out, the bare soil was covered with a good layer of sand and the pond liner was put down.

The pond liner was quite large and it took a while to get it to fall into place. The pond liner was pushed down into the hole and the plastic tank was placed inside and filled with water to help keep the liner in place.

 

The photographs below show the pond liner and tank in there final position, and the final arrangement of rocks and stones. The large rocks were built up to form a rising wall around the edge and two matching paving slabs were use to build steps for the waterfall. It took a long time to get the large rocks to fit together, when I was happy, they were cement into position and the excess liner was cut away.

The pond liner was covered with a selection of round cobble stones. There are three different size stones used here, the larger cobbles were placed around the edge, gradually getting smaller towards the centre. The front edge was finished off with 8 paving slabs which formed a simi-circle and once again the liner excess was trimmed away. A chemical treatment was added to the water to keep it clear.
 

With the addition of some nice rockery plants the water feature was finished on the 6th of August, it took a lot longer to build than I expected but this was due to having the wettest June and July ever.

The finished pond

"Click on the image to enlarge"

 

THE BUILDING OF BARNA RAILWAY

"Part 2- Bridge construction"

 

With the water feature finished it was time to start building the bridge. I had a lot of aluminium channel and tubing in the shed so I decided to use this for its construction. The design is based on a truss type bridge, with four uprights and tubular cross bracing. The two photographs show the bridge under construction in the shed. The second photograph shows the bridge nearly completed.  

 

The bridge is 1140mm long and 350mm wide and took 14m of channel, 9m of tubing and 2.5m of angle to build. The bridge was undercoated with a red oxide primer, then finished with two coats of grey enamel.

 

The final photographs show the finished bridge in operation during the day, and at night, fully illuminated by nine blue LED spot lamps.

The finished bridge by day The finished bridge at night

"Click on the images to enlarge"

Click on the contact me link if you have any questions or comments.

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