Cracks found in arch of iconic 'Harry Potter' viaduct

The 122-year-old viaduct will have a metal bracket secured on the parapet while repairs are carried out.

Cracks found in arch of iconic ‘Harry Potter’ Hogwarts Express Glenfinnan Viaduct landmark iStock

An iconic Highlands landmark, made famous in the Harry Potter films, is undergoing repairs after cracks appeared in one of its arches.

The Glenfinnan viaduct, which overlooks the Glenfinnan Monument and the waters of Loch Shiel, was built between 1897 and 1901.

Network Rail has granted building consent to Highland Council to carry out the temporary repairs to the 122-year-old structure.

The work is the first part of a wider refurbishment programme which will see a temporary brace installed.

Glenfinnan Viaduct is a railway viaduct on the West Highland Line.Getty Images

The work will be delivered during a series of night-shifts and will not disrupt the running of services on the structure.

The repair work will involve securing a metal bracket on the parapet (side wall) on the north (inland facing) side of the viaduct, which will minimise the visual impact of the repair on the structure for visitors to the area.

Alan Ross, director of engineering and asset management for Scotland’s Railway, said: “The viaduct is an iconic landmark which attracts visitors from across the world, so we’ve worked hard to develop a solution which protects the structure while minimising the visual impact of our work.

“We explored a range of options to address the repair and the bracket we will install offers the best technical and visual solution that can be delivered in a way that will not disrupt passenger services on the line.”

It comes after West Coast Railways announced that the popular Jacobite steam train – unofficially dubbed “The Hogwarts Express” – will not run before August 9.

The train, which runs over the Glenfinnan Viaduct was found by inspectors from Office of Rail and Road (ORR) to have problems with the hinged door rolling stock.

A statement from West Coast Railways said: “As of now, passenger journeys on the Jacobite, have been suspended while West Coast Railways review the concerns raised by the ORR to reach a satisfactory and swift solution to the issues raised and are looking to bring the Jacobite Steam Train back into service as soon as possible.

“Unfortunately, we are unable to offer any alternative dates to transfer your trip to, therefore our reservations team will process a full refund within the next ten working days.

“Please accept our sincere apologies for these cancellations.

“All pre-booked passengers have been contacted via email and by text where a mobile number has been supplied.”

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