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Arten Gill Viaduct
Artengill Beck, Stone House, Dentdale, Cumbria, UK
Arten Gill Viaduct
associated engineer
John Sydney Crossley
date  early 1870 - 1875
UK era  Victorian  |  category  Railway Viaduct  |  reference  SD775858
ICE reference number  HEW 8
photo  PHEW
Arten Gill Viaduct is one of two major masonry structures built relatively close to each other as part of the southern section of the Settle & Carlisle Railway the only mainline mountain railway in the country. The other is the Dent Head Viaduct. Both lie between Blea Moor Tunnel and Dent Station.
Arten Gill viaduct was constructed in 'Dent marble' a dark limestone with high fossil content. It has eleven almost semi-circular segmented arches, which span 13.7m each and have a radius of 7m. At its highest point, it carries the rails at 35.7m above water level. John Sydney Crossley designed it as part his work on the whole railway. He was chief engineer to the Midland Railway, the builders of the line.
The viaduct's piers are tapered, with prominent springings for the arches. Two sets of widened piers, which are designed to prevent progressive collapse should one of the arches fail, divide the viaduct into sections of two, three and six spans. The foundations of several of the piers are sunk 16.8m below the river bed onto bed rock. The parapets are of solid masonry and the viaduct is 201m long. The date 1875 can be seen on the arch to the north of Arten Gill.
The viaduct is most impressive on the skyline, particularly when approached from below along a rough farm track up the side of the hill from Stone Houses, half way between Dent Head and Cowgill.
Resident engineer: John Somes Story
Contractor: Benton & Woodiwiss
Research: PD
reference sources   CEH North

Arten Gill Viaduct