Menu
Facebook Twitter ePetition

Below is a collection of reports and documents forming the evidence upon which our concerns over the future of the Historical Railways Estate are based.

The misrepresentations of National Highways

A report examining the false claims made by National Highways about the condition of Great Musgrave bridge and its associated risks, alleged engagement with two heritage railways, and intervention by Eden District Council in relation to the infill scheme.

July 2023: PDF (2.6MB)

Great Musgrave EDE/25

A report written by Bill Harvey Associates - masonry arch specialists - providing a detailed appraisal of the recorded defects, their deterioration and causes, discussion around the bridge’s capacity and the extent to which it was being overloaded, an evaluation of the need for strengthening and the likely future impacts of infilling on the structure.

May 2021: PDF (2.2MB)

Barrowland Lane bridge

A paper submitted in April 2023 for the consideration of National Highways regarding BRP/8 Barrowland Lane bridge near Toller Porcorum, Dorset. It examines the arguments put forward by NH for demolition of the structure, its condition and causes of the recorded defects, and puts forward two remediation options.

PDF (2.9MB)

Class Q infills

A paper submitted for the February 2023 meeting of National Highways' Stakeholder Advisory Forum as an 'Any Other Business' item; however NH refused to allow it to be discussed. It examines the circumstances around the infilling of Rudgate and Congham bridges under Class Q emergency development powers which NH has breached, resulting in the schemes now being unauthorised.

PDF (2.9MB)

Stoke Road bridge documentation

Correspondence between Highways England and the South Downs National Park Authority regarding the proposed infilling of Stoke Road bridge near Itchen Stoke, plus a letter from a Highways England manager to an MP and the media statement issued by Highways England about the bridge.

PDF (14.3MB)

Great Musgrave bridge documentation

The 1998 Structural Assessment, 2017 Detailed Examination, 2020 & 2021 Visual Inspections, and chain of emails between Highways England's engineer and the planning team at Eden District Council.

PDF (14.3MB)

The infilling of Great Musgrave bridge

This document brings together evidence demonstrating significant failures in Highways England's processes around the infilling of a bridge in Cumbria needed for a future connection between two heritage railways.

June 2021: PDF (6.7MB)

The Historical Railways Estate: Securing Its Potential

This document illustrates the potential impact of Highways England's damaging infilling and demolition programme on the development of active travel routes, railway reopenings and extensions to heritage lines.

Issue 1/May 2021: PDF (8.66MB)

HE-DfT Protocol Agreement

This document sets out the requirements for the eight Protocols which Highways England have been asked to undertake by the Secretary of State for Transport, including management of the Historical Railways Estate (Section 5).

April 2015: PDF (264kB)

HRE Draft Strategic Plan

This document produced by Highways England outlines the approach the company hopes to take with regards to management of the Historical Railways Estate, reducing the level of liability to which HE and the Department for Transport are exposed.

March 2016: PDF (564kB)

HRE Infillings & Demolitions

This spreadsheet details the 134 structures that Highways England have earmarked for infilling or demolition. The company claims that this number has now been reduced, but has refused multiple requests to provide a new list of the affected structures.

December 2020: PDF (157kB)

HRE Failed Assessment List

This spreadsheet details the 169 structures that Highways England claim to have failed their most recent BD21 assessments and no weight restrictions have subsequently been applied. Research has demonstrated that several of the structures *do* have restrictions.

February 2021: PDF (42kB)

HRE Recent Average Project Costs

The average cost of the three bridge demolition and five bridge infilling projects undertaken prior to January 2021.

January 2021: PDF (76kB)

HRE Permitted Development Notifications

The 34 letters sent by Jacobs/Highways England to Local Planning Authorities claiming that the relevant structures are to be infilled "to prevent an emergency arising".

April/Sept 2020: PDF (9.6MB)

CS 454 Assessment of highway bridges and structures

This document is used for the assessment of highway bridges and structures constructed of steel, concrete, wrought iron and cast iron, and brick and stone masonry arches.

March 2020: PDF (15.4kB)

CS 470 Management of sub-standard highway structures

This document is used to provide the requirements for the management of highway structures that have either been assessed to be sub-standard according to the requirements of CS 454 or are deemed to be sub-standard by other methods.

March 2020: PDF (475kB)

CG 304 Conservation of highway structures

This document is used where maintenance work is required for highway structures. It states that it is usually preferable to conserve and retain wherever practicable. Replacement should only be undertaken as a last resort. Conservation is economical in the use of natural resources and is a particularly sustainable form of construction, which does not necessarily add to the costs of managing historic structures.

March 2020: PDF (436kB)

Protocol for The Care Of The Government Historic Estate

The Protocol explains how the government’s commitment to its heritage should be put into practice.

November 2017: PDF (91kB)

Biennial Report on the Care of the Government Historic Estate 2019-21

Every two years, what is now the Government Historic Estates Unit of Historic England has produced a report into the care of the historic assets owned or cared for by government departments, agencies and similar bodies. This report publishes an analysis of performance as reflected in the answers to questions asked.

May 2022: PDF (4.9MB)

Biennial Report on the Care of the Government Historic Estate 2017-19

Every two years, what is now the Government Historic Estates Unit of Historic England has produced a report into the care of the historic assets owned or cared for by government departments, agencies and similar bodies. This report publishes an analysis of performance as reflected in the answers to questions asked.

March 2020: PDF (2.65MB)

About Us

The HRE Group is an alliance of walking, cycling and heritage campaigners, engineers and greenway developers who regard the Historical Railways Estate’s structures to be strategically valuable in the context of building a better future.

Last updated 8 February 2024
© 2024 The HRE Group