Rail electrification delays hit local businesses
Waste firm Grundon is the latest casualty of the closed A340 bridge near Aldermaston station, having almost run out of minerals at a site west of Brimpton Road.
The firm is in the middle of a 10-year plan to mine land at Kennetholme Quarry in Bath Road, Midgham, and was due to transfer mineral from the east side of the site to the west via an underground conveyor.
The construction of the conveyor under Brimpton Road has been delayed due to the extended closure, and the knock-on effect means the planned works for the Brimpton Road railway bridge have also been delayed by about six months to prevent multiple road closures.
Grundon has lodged plans with West Berkshire Council to alter its planning consent to enable it to mine 40,000 tonnes of sand and gravel over the next four to five months from alongside the access road until the under-road conveyor can be installed.
In March the waste management company John Stacey said its running costs were increasing in excess of £40,000 a week as its lorries were having to be diverted lorries via the A4 to Reading and from there to Burghfield.
The commercial manager at Aldermaston-based Alder-maston Recycling Ltd, Colin Wilkie, said that the two companies would incur costs of £1m in three months owing to the extra fuel being used on travelling greater distances.
A six-mile round trip would become a 50-mile trip due to the closures, he said.
Work on the Aldermaston level crossings is now scheduled to be complete on September 13, according to Network Rail, after structural problems were discovered.
The A340 bridge was due to open on May 12 and the Beenham Lockside Crescent bridge was due to open on July 5.
West Berkshire Council has said it has no alternative to the arrangements to ensure that the diversion route remained viable.