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Tinsley Bridge Group

Tinsley Bridge Apprentice Design Solution for UK Rail Network


Tinsley Bridge has designed an innovative solution to speed up the installation of safety critical Stretcher Bars for rail switches.

Tubular Stretcher Bars manufactured by Tinsley Bridge are installed by Network Rail to keep railway tracks parallel in switches and eliminate risks of train derailment. Network Rail approached Tinsley Bridge to help solve difficulties experienced by their engineers when fitting the stretcher bar units, which often takes place late at night in remote, dark and cold locations.

The length of the stretcher bar is set during installation, the temporary freedom of movement provided by an adjustment key inserted into an otherwise inaccessible location.

The Tinsley Bridge solution uses a specially designed tool to help the adjustment key insert into the required position easily and quickly. Russ Crow, Tinsley Bridge Engineering Development Director said “The challenge was taken up by apprentice Jordan d’Arras. His innovation and creativity has delivered a solution which eliminates the difficulty adjusting Stretcher Bar length. We are very proud that an idea from one of our young engineers has been accepted by Network Rail.” Jordan is currently studying for a Materials Engineering Degree at Sheffield Hallam University.