Restoring the Wrought Iron Giant

Bennerley Viaduct, made largely from wrought iron, has withstood the test of time and is in remarkably good shape for a structure which has been exposed to the elements since 1877.  Bringing the viaduct back into use has focussed attention on how best we can make the necessary repairs and how we ensure that the structure remains sound as it is brought back into use as a walking and cycling trail.

A seminar involving  Derby College students, engineers, heritage related conservation officers and members from the Friends of Bennerley Viaduct all learnt a great deal from Geoff Wallis, a leading conservator and founder member of the National Heritage Ironwork Group (NHIG) .   The event was hosted at the historic Roundhouse in Derby which is a Derby College campus.

Geoff Wallis had visited the Bennerley Viaduct on the previous day, learning about the project and assessing the scale of decay which has taken place.  He pointed out to delegates  where the structure needed attention and he outlined non invasive restoration techniques. Following the event, Geoff said ” You have a wonderful structure at Bennerley and your plans for its future are excellent.”

Sustrans Network Development Project Officer Bill Tomson said “we feel more informed and inspired about cast iron and wrought iron. Such knowledge will greatly help in our efforts to restore, manage and maintain Bennerley Viaduct correctly

The seminar was funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and hosted in a partnership with Derby College.