Dover Sea Wall

Dover, UK

Project synopsis

Remedial works design to reopen a crucial railway line between Dover and Folkstone. Our simple, repeatable solution enabled the line to be reopened ahead of schedule.



End client

Network Rail


ICE South East of England Engineering Excellence Awards 2017 - Best Infrastructure Project Winner

Tony Gee was employed to design the remedial works for the line between Folkestone and Dover, which was closed in late 2015, after heavy winter storms and tides damaged the sea wall. The most probable cause of failure was the washing out of material behind the seawall, leading to sinkholes forming at track level and a crack appearing in the weakened structure.

Our design, a concrete viaduct consisting of four sections of piled rafts supporting two tracks, totalled 235m in length. The works also included rock armour revetment, a new fibre reinforced polymer footbridge, a sea spray protection wall and a new culvert.

The project’s political nature meant that a quick reopening was the ultimate goal. Initial plans were for a December 2016 reopening, however the line was able to be reopened as early as 5th September. This success was attributed to a repeatable, simple design, piled raft submissions were kept separate for flexibility and Network Rail had a dedicated team for the project.

The project was separated into different areas of work. Our Ashford office designed the rock armour revetment, Esher took on project management, civils works and footbridge specifications whilst our offices in St. Albans and Stonehouse carried out independent checking. The highly collaborative approach of all parties involved, both within and outside Tony Gee, ultimately proved to be the key contributor for success.