Shropshire Star

Comment: Rail workers fixed a 5,000-tonne landslip in just 21 days - I'm sorry I ever doubted them

Two weeks ago I was fortunate enough to be invited along to talk to Network Rail about the work to repair the massive landslip near Oakengates.

The landslip, just two weeks ago

When I arrived, just seven days after around 5,000 tonnes of earth had slipped away from the 160-year-old embankment, the scale of the work involved took my breath away.

No amount of drone footage, statistics or phone calls to press teams had prepared me for the size of the slip, which had left around 50 meters of track precariously close to the now sheer drop.

Most of the 16,000 tonnes of stone they would soon use to strengthen the embankment hadn't yet been delivered, and the teams were sludging their heavy machinery through tonnes of thick, wet mud to clear the way for the stabilisation work to begin.

As I spoke to engineers, earth continued to slip slowly away from the historic railway embankment above.