Wray Valley Cycle Trail
The Wray Valley Trail project was to provide a new off-road community path for use by cyclists, pedestrians and equestrians, linking the village of Moretonhampstead with Lustleigh and Bovey Tracey. The works comprised the construction of a 2.5 metre wide shared cycleway/walkway approximately 1.33km long. The trail is largely through fields and across a small stream, then follows the line of the disused railway and across the A382 over a 25 metre span bridge. The trail was constructed from layers of compacted recycled asphalt planings.
The main structures and constructed features on the site were a small stone bridge, 250 metre of Devon hedge (earth bank topped with hedgerow shrubs), a 5 metre high reinforced earth bridge abutment, and a 25 metre span steel bridge, which was manufactured and fabricated, in two sections, by Nusteel Structures Ltd and transported from their premises in Kent. Temporary works included a haulage road, concrete foundations for crane outrigger pads and two temporary culverts.
An essential part of the scheme was reinstating Budleigh Farm Bridge, which was dismantled when the railway was decommissioned in 1965. The proposed replacement bridge was 3 meters wide and span 25 metres to take into account recent changes to the carriageway.
The bridge spans the A382 which is the main access in and out of the south of Moretonhampstead. Closing the A382 required a 50 mile diversion for vehicles. The initial objective was to have the bridge deck manufactured as one 25 metre unit, delivered to site as an abnormal load, and lifted into place in one operation, minimising disruption to the public. However, due to the narrow and winding nature of the A382, tests and investigations ruled this an impossible task to have the deck delivered as one unit. The bridge was subsequently designed as two units which would be joined together on site before being lifted into position. The whole operation from delivery to road open took 24 hours.
The whole project involved many other elements of construction and landscaping including; road construction, water trough, top soiling and seeding, steps, ramps, a close boarded timber edge fence, security fencing, 250m palisade fence and several miles of stock proof post and rail fencing.
The environmental and ecological challenges were many on this scheme. Working within Dartmoor National Park and next to a watercourse, working under license for the presence of bats, badgers and dormice and archaeological finds were just a few of the issues that needed managing carefully.
Due to the nature of the scheme and the impact of the works on the village, we employed a Customer Liaison Officer to manage public liaison, keeping all interested parties informed on a daily basis. Our successful interaction with the local community ensured that we received zero complaints.
SWH Civils and Devon County Council maintained a professional and good working relationship throughout the scheme and dealt jointly with any issues that arose, resulting in the works being delivered both on time and within budget.
“The Wray Valley Trail is a high profile scheme located within the Dartmoor National Park boundary. SWH site and office staff worked seamlessly with DCC to ensure the project was delivered in a manner appropriate to the environment, on time and to budget”
Ian Jones, Devon County Council