Building Bridges to engineering in Linlithgow

Engineers involved in the delivery of the Edinburgh Glasgow Improvement Programme (EGIP) visited Linlithgow Bridge Primary School, to encourage the engineers of the future with the innovative hands-on workshop - ‘Bridges to Schools’ initiative.

Linlithgow Bridge Primary build bridges to engineering

As part of Network Rail’s wider community engagement associated with EGIP, the team visited the school to help raise awareness of the range of career opportunities in civil engineering.

Designed for primary six and seven pupils, 60 children took part in three separate workshops where they were tasked with completing the installation of a 12.5m long cable-stayed bridge, made from aluminium and plywood decking, and stainless steel cables. Once built, the students walked across the bridges to test their stability.

As well as building the bridge, pupils learned more about civil engineering in the real world including finding out more about recent platform extension works on Linlithgow station and raising the height of the railway boundary walls at Royal Terrace and Union Road.

Linlithgow Bridge Primary engineering initiative

The platform extensions are part of the wider EGIP work to create the additional length needed to accommodate the seven and eight car electric trains which will be introduced on the route from summer 2017. Raising the height of the parallel walls is to ensure the railway boundary is complaint with safety standards for an electrified railway.

Kevin McClelland route delivery director for Network Rail, said: “We’ve delivered a number of workshops during the EGIP and they are always extremely well received by pupils and teachers. Not only does it provide an opportunity to undertake a practical and fun task, the children also learn about engineering in the wider world, including about projects in their own town with the work at Linlithgow station.

More ‘Bridges to Schools’ workshops are planned in Linlithgow before schools break for the summer holidays.

Susan Webster, head teacher of Linlithgow Bridge Primary School, said: “We are grateful to the engineers from EGIP for taking time out from the project to deliver the workshops. They have provided pupils with a valuable insight into civil engineering and the difference it makes to our everyday lives.

“The workshops highlighted the importance of working as a team, allowing the children to experience first-hand the role each individual makes to the overall outcome when delivering a large scale project.”

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