THE start of tunnelling for Britain’s new high-speed rail line begins in the new year and two giant boring machines are waiting at the HS2 site in West Ruislip.

The 1,900-ton machines were delivered from the manufacturer in Germany.

They are the first of six that will bore 13 miles of twin tunnels under London. 

Eight other machines will operate on the project, digging 64 miles of tunnels in total.

Getting the huge machines to the site required support from the police and National Highways.

Around 15 people at a time will operate each machine, working in shifts around the clock for two years.

MEANWHILE, construction of the UK’s longest railway bridge took another major step forward this week.

Work started on the first of 56 giant concrete piers that will support the Colne Valley Viaduct as it crosses a series of lakes.

Stretching for 3.4km, the viaduct will carry high-speed trains travelling at up to 200mph between the outskirts of Hillingdon and the M25.

The team have also completed work on the first of four jetties across the lakes to get equipment into position.