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I’m currently working for Network Rail around Bath, Bathampton & Box tunnel on the Great Western Mainline electrification scheme. It’s a fascinating job that vividly illustrates the problems of modernising a Victorian rail network – especially one that contains so many iconic and listed structures.I’ll blog about this in more detail, but for now I’ll share with you part of the site induction, which gives a historical & technical perspective on the famous Box Tunnel.

Box tunnel facts

I cracked a wry smile when I read the section on detractors & objectors & their doom-laden prophesies as this reminds me so much of the modern day opposition to Hs2. Plus ça change!

What was more sobering was reading about the death toll. 100. We may chafe at modern ‘elf & safety’ but on the railways it’s a vital component of everyday work.

Right, time to go and put that PPE on…

UPDATE:

For once, I’ve actually managed to get myself on the other side of the camera in Box tunnel. Thanks goes to my COSS, Joe Kensley for stepping up to the plate to get a decent pic in very difficult circumstances!

Beam me up Scottie! looking up one of the air shafts in the Box tunnel.

Beam me up Scottie! looking up one of the air shafts in the Box tunnel.