Wiltshire Publications

Issue 450 – New £8m rail recycling yard for Westbury

WORK has started on a new £8m railway recycling centre on the Brook Lane industrial estate.

The new facility, owned by Network Rail will recycle old track materials, and create 20 new jobs.
Network Rail hope that the site, which will be the second largest recycling centre of its type in the country, will open in spring next year.
The site will recycle 25 percent of all disused track materials across Britain’s railways, equating to 110,000 concrete sleepers and 30,000 tonnes of rail and fixtures each year.
The majority of these materials will be transported to and from the site by rail on a 1km rail siding to be constructed.
It has been reported that up to 160 lorries could be coming to and from the site each week, but a Network Rail spokesperson denied this, claiming that only two or three lorries a day would visit the centre.
She said, “We have a full traffic management plan to reassure residents in the area, and we only ever use designated lorry routes anyway.”
Recycled concrete sleepers will either be reused on the railway across the Western route or sold on to other industries, especially agriculture, to pave roads and build bunds.  Rails and fittings will be processed into the scrap metal market and used in steel manufacturing.
Martin Elwood, director of the national delivery service unit of Network Rail said, “The 21st century railway will also be an eco-friendly railway.  Westbury recycling centre will have a vital role to play in helping Network Rail achieve that vision and that’s only possible with the tremendous support from the community.”
Network Rail has also helped create three new habitats to re-home protected reptile species found on the site. A spokesperson said, “We’re relocating the slow-worms and lizards to different habitats so that they can continue to breed.”
The company is also working closely with ecological specialists to protect bats by reducing light spill into the surrounding woodlands.
When complete, the facility will feature a 1km railway siding, a five acre concrete area to store and recycle the various materials, and a building and 20 car parking spaces for staff.