Network Rail said ground under the Nuneham Viaduct was "like porridge" as the company issued an update on the work.

The bridge which crosses the River Thames between Culham and Radley is closed to all rail traffic after concerns were raised that it was sinking.

On May 23, Network Rail confirmed engineers were still working towards an opening date of June 10.

READ MORE: Ex-Oxford professor cleared of rape and sexual coercion

The date was pushed back in April after the scale of the work required became clear.

Network Rail said that progress had been made on the piling for the new abutment which supports the structure.

The company also apologised to all those affected by the work.

Here is Network Rail's May 23 update in full:

“We are well on with the piling for the new abutment.                                                   

“Having removed that down here we have had to produce a level area that we can get these new piling rigs on to allow us to pile the new abutment.

Oxford Mail: Stuart Calvert, Capital Delivery Director for Network Rail, has been tasked to oversee repairs of

“Now the abutment is the bit that supports the structure so it’s a really important thing and the ground.

“This gives an explanation to the problems we had with the previous support.

“It was like porridge- you could literally see it floating under the abutment.

“The other interesting thing is we found the original piles from the 1865 timber structure.

“We are just about to start piling the last pile.


“When we finish that we have to put caps in top of these big steel poles and then a new cill beam that will form the support for the structure.

“We are not finished then because we will have to put piles in to stop the material that we put back into the embankment from moving away from the railway.

“And that is a big operation in its own right. We will have 600 truckloads of material coming down the hill here to fill this.

“Once again, we are really grateful for the people in the local community who’ve supported us while we are doing this work.

“It is a massive task with the land and the materials. We’ve had to bring in plant movements and so on.

“We really do apologise to the people who’ve had to listen to this piling. That will go on but not for that much longer.

“So thank you for your tolerance, whilst we do this essential activity.

“We are really sorry that we have had to close the railway line.

“We’re coming towards the end of this operation and we will be restoring services as soon as possible and by June 10.”