WET weather has hampered contractors working on the current phase of improvements to Dawlish railway.

Heavy rain has delayed some of the ongoing work being carried out as part of the South West Rail Resilience Programme.

Contractors say the new rockfall shelter to the north of Parson’s Tunnel, near Holcombe, is continuing to take shape.

Mesh is being installed which will help top stabilise the cliffs there.

Up the line at Dawlish, wires have been added to the new link bridge that will join the two sections of public promenade at Colonnade.

Piling for the new station footbridge with lifts has continued in the car park and work will carry on over weekend nights when trains are not running.

A spokesman for the programme which is Network Rail’s project to protect the line said: ‘Unfortunately, the wet weather has slowed down or prevented work on the granite paving on the promenade and stilling basin areas.’

Over the Christmas period, good progress was made installing 50 per cent of the piled foundations required for the new footbridge and lifts.

Piling work will continue for the footbridge which is due to open this summer.

Contractors have said: ‘Thanks to our neighbours for your patience while we carry out this work to improve accessibility at the station.’

The project was set up following devastating storms in 2014 which ripped the line at Dawlish in half, leaving the South West’s rail link cut off for eight weeks.

The long term aim of the project, costing millions of pounds, is to improve and protect the vulnerable coastal line.