Stratton St Bridge, Biggleswade

We were appointed with the demolition of the bridge that ran through the Bedfordshire village of Biggleswade during a Christmas possession. Due to heavy winds on the day the programme had to be extended into several other possessions.

Railway Bridge Demolition

Downwell have just completed a 12 possession demolition of the Stratton St Bridge in Biggleswade, Bedfordshire. The project comprised of the removal of all of the road surfaces, the parapets, breaking free the concrete panels before finally lifting out the concrete panels that made up the deck.

Scope of Works

  • Small enabling works had to be completed to allow for the services to be diverted out of the bridge deck. The walls either side of the bridge deck had to be demolished to allow for the temporary services deck to be installed.
  • The bridge was closed and the traffic was diverted around an alternative route.
  • The paving slabs and iron bollards that were running the full length of the bridge on either side were carefully removed and salvaged for reinstatement later.
  • The asphalt surface was removed using a road planer. The material was removed from site and recycled at a local recycling facility.
  • The joins in the concrete panels that made up the deck were saw cut 75% of the way through. The fixing down bolts were also exposed by breaking the concrete away from around then.
  • During the the first full night time possession a scaffold deck was erected beneath the bridge, spanning the entire underside of the bridge. The brick parapets were demolished using a 5 tonne excavator. The arisings were loaded into boat skips before being lifted off the bridge deck.
  • The final 25% of saw cutting was completed on the panels to be lifted out following the pre defined lifting sequence. The holding down bolts on the panels to be lifted out were cut using oxy-propane cutting equipment.
  • Over the next several possessions the concrete panels were lifted out using the 220 tonne & 180 tonne mobile cranes which were positioned on both ends of the bridge.
  • Both cranes were operating simultaneously to lift the concrete panels out in the pre defined sequence. The panels were lifted  onto waiting flatbed lorries. They were then transported to a n off site facility for processing and recycling.

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Demolition Insights

Project Name:
Stratton St Bridge

Biggleswade, Bedfordshire, SG18


Project Dates:
12/15 - 03/16

100 years of demolition experience


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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Statement - Wednesday 25th March

The Prime Minister’s announcement on Monday evening signalled the introduction of more stringent restrictions on us all and has specifically indicated that members of the public should only leave their home for very limited purposes. The message indicates that we should travel to and from work, only where this is absolutely necessary.

The management of the Downwell Group of companies which includes: Downwell Demolition, Inner City Environmental and Inner City Scaffolding has very carefully considered both the meaning and the spirit of the Prime Minister’s statement and whilst there has been some clarification from government subsequently that building sites could continue to operate, we came to the very clear decision yesterday that it was necessary for us, as a responsible contractor, to safely and securely close down our operational sites as soon as reasonably possible. Doing so will assist in maintaining the wellbeing of our customers, employees, sub-contractors, suppliers and the wider communities within which we build.

All sites have been closed down in a safe and secure manner and will remain closed until further notice.

We would like to take this opportunity of thanking all the key workers on the frontline who are continiung working for the good of us all.