A previous strike on the railway bridge in Lichfield
A previous strike on the railway bridge in Lichfield

Drivers are being urged to follow diversions around Lichfield in full to avoid hitting “Britain’s most bashed railway bridge”.

Resurfacing work is due to start today (6th July) at Wall roundabout on the A5, between Muckley Corner and the Weeford roundabout.

The road will be closed in both directions between Muckley Corner and Wall Island from 8pm to 6am every weeknight until 24th July.

But Network Rail fears drivers of high vehicles may be tempted to try and take a short cut through Lichfield – bringing them into the path of the railway bridge at St John Street.

Despite height restrictions and signage, it has been struck 28 times in the last 12 months, making it the most hit railway bridge in Britain.

Martin Colmey, from Network Rail said:

“With St John Street bridge in Lichfield already having the unenviable title of the most bashed in the country, I’d urge all drivers of large vehicles to follow the recommended diversion signs and not their sat-nav during Highways England’s work on the A5.

“There is no excuse for drivers to hit railway bridges. Bridge strikes are entirely avoidable, put the safety of rail passengers and road users at risk, and cost the taxpayer millions of pounds each year to fix.

“Our message is simple – lorry drivers, plan your route and know, don’t guess, the height of your vehicle.”

Martin Colmey, Network Rail

Agreed diversions have been put in place to take high-sided vehicles around Lichfield City centre rather than through it.


Founder of Lichfield Live and editor of the site.

11 replies on “Drivers urged to follow diversions during Lichfield roadworks to avoid hitting “Britain’s most bashed railway bridge””

  1. Would not a tubular height gauge ahead of the bridge enable inattentive HGV drivers to be warned before hitting the bridge? They are used elsewhere.

  2. Your last paragraph quote:
    “Agreed diversions have been put in place to take high-sided vehicles around Lichfield City centre rather than through it.”
    Means absolutely nothing to HGV drivers they ignore them. The Staffs County Council do nothing about it, they can but Won’t.

  3. Great to have the Southern Bypass at the head of St John’s Street. It should make the strike rate record virtually unassailable. The council wouldn’t listen and, of course, no one is to blame.

  4. Unless of course #Philip Allso one happens to live on the ‘Southern Bypass’ as I do. I will now have to put up with HGVs travelling past my house at all hours disturbing my sleep, which is always the case when work is being carried out on the A5.

  5. I think Ann you may have missed the irony in my comment. I am definitely not in favour of the so called “By Pass” route. How can it be a by pass if it goes through not only your estate but also for those proposed further along its route? It was a cheap option the council went for in spite of more sensible alternatives. They are in total denial about the pollution and the congestion it will cause. Their attitude appears to suggest that citizens are collateral damage when they can keep costs down.

  6. AnnS don’t worry the HGVs won’t use the bypass. They haven’t used the ones around lichfield what makes you think they are going to use this new one.

  7. Well said Hans- we lived in Germany for many years and have often commented on how well they worked over there.

  8. #Philip Allso, yes, I did miss the irony. #Roy Appleby, oh but they are, at least up to the Birmingham Road roundabout, and because I live quite close to one of the smaller roundabouts the noise from what I assume are air-brakes is so loud.

  9. 22nd of July 8. 30 Diversion signs have resulted in high articulated lorries coming up Shortbutts Lane. Causing traffic delays and near misses of the railway bridge!

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