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Gem Bridge nearly ready!

posted 1 Apr 2012, 03:46 by William NB
Gem Bridge desck - Devon Coast to Coast cycling holiday
It has been a while since they've started, but Gem Bridge is nearly ready! Spanning the Walkham valley between Tavistock and Horabridge, on the site of Brunel's former railway viaduct, Gem Bridge offers a safe and pleasant alternative to cross the Walkham valley.
Before Gem Bridge was built, this part of NCN 27 was considered by many as the worst part of the route. Indeed, some even said it was the worst part of any NCN route!

Gem Bridge - Devon coast to coast cycling holiday 

Gem Bridge view - Devon coast to Coast cycling holiday
The first photo shows the deck of Gem Bridge, which wasn't quite completed yet at the time.

The second photo was taken looking towards Horabridge. The slope in the foreground used to be tarred, and is so steep that I used to get wheelspin cycling up it!
The third photo shows some of the view from Gem Bridge, though to be honest it doesn't do the view justice.

Of course, Gem Bridge is only part of the changes made here. There is also the new route through the old, disused Grenofen tunnel. As the following pictures show, work is progressing here, even if not quite as fast as we'd like it to. The course of the old railway was heavily overgrown, and has now been cut back.
Grenofen tunnel - Devon Coast to Coast cycling holiday
Grenofen tunnel - Devon Coast to Coast cycling holiday
Grenofen tunnel - Devon coast to coast cycling holiday











Once the Grenofen tunnel route opens it will offer a traffic-free option that is far more direct and far less hilly than the current route. The difference will be especially noticeable to those that are on a Devon coast to coast cycling holiday from Plymouth to Ilfracombe!

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