Maintaining bridges and cycle paths for Sustrans / Railway Paths Ltd

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Developing a long-term relationship and cost-effective asset management framework

ECSL have a long-standing, strong working relationship with Sustrans/RPL which has developed over a number of years. Both clients are charities with requires careful asset management budgeting, so we have worked hard to develop techniques and working practices for maximising efficiency. This allows Sustrans / RPL to get more return for their capital spend, tying in to our Corporate Social Responsibility philosophy and supports sustainable transport initiatives.

Project Overview

As part of our close working relationship with Sustrans/Railway Paths Limited we have undertaken research and development relating to reducing asset management costs, such as the use of Linseed oil for corrosion protection on metallic structures (for which we were highly commended in the 2019 British Construction Industry Awards). The linseed oil proposal is environmentally friendly and cost effective meaning that Sustrans volunteers can undertake the application.

  • Client

    Sustrans / Railway Paths Ltd

  • Location

    East Midlands

  • Date

    December 2019 - January 2020

  • Sector

    Rail, Bridges, Asset Management

Our Solution

In addition to our main services we employed trusted sub-contractors to provide roped access and UAV services, have appeared as a specialist on both TV programmes and radio about the structure and presented at numerous local and national engagement events about the conservation of the structure.

The contract was undertaken in accordance with NEC3 and we have always over-delivered under budget and within programme on all our contracts, providing additional social value through community engagement events, STEM activities and Research and Development, most recently demonstrated by a joint RPL/ECSL entry into the British Construction Industry Awards where we were shortlisted in the Environment and Sustainability category in 2019.

Working with organisations such as Sustrans and our numerous heritage railway clients forces us to develop innovative technical and delivery solutions due to the limited funds typically available on a project. These efficiencies that we have developed on these projects previously can be brought to the BCC framework to help maximise return on spendature.

Most recently ECSL were contracted to undertake 32No. visual bridge examinations and prioritise the forward asset management workload for 2020. We utilised out STE04 qualified bridge examiners to undertake the site works with guidance from our technical director on work bank prioritisation.

Project Highlights

2019 British Construction Industry Awards – Highly commended

Helping maintain a portfolio of 1,300 bridge structures

Creating … cycle paths over the last 5 years

Our range of expertise.

Research and Development

The ECSL love being involved with Research and Development projects of all shapes and sizes. We have experience of working with local universities and charitable organisations, supporting our clients with grants for R&D projects and writing research papers.

Pro Bono Services

If you are a charitable organisation or a Trust, ECSL can provide you with assistance in obtaining grants, free and/or discounted engineering consultancy services, community engagement, training and work experience.


Continuous Professional Development

Our engineers can support you in the running of CPD events nationally and internationally, from Derby to Delhi, engaging audiences in offices and universities alike.

The ECSL team are specialists in historical bridges and bridge asset management and would love to share that knowledge and experience with you by delivering a lunch time seminar, webinar or workshop. Email us today to book your free event.

Geotechnical Engineering

From scoping ground investigation to designing retaining walls, our geotechnical engineers are able to provide you with a solid foundation for any project.

Condition Surveys and Investigation

Our teams have extensive structural investigation experience, specialising in the determination of residual working life, identifying the underlying cause of structural degradation and developing structural health monitoring plans.

Repair and Remediation

ECSL excels in the field of bridge remediation, with industry leaders combining the latest innovation with historical precedent.

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