The local government comes to the rescue after being pressured by devotees of the band...

The railroad trestle featured on the cover of R.E.M‘s debut album, MURMUR, has been saved from demolition – due to pressure from disgruntled fans.

According to the official R.E.M website, [url=]www.remhq.com, the trestle, which features on the back cover of the 1983 album and crosses Trail Creek in Georgia, was due to be demolished last week.

However, REM fans bombarded the local Athens County Mayor‘s office with e-mails of protest, and the local government has decided to purchase the trestle for a reported $5,000, thus sparing it.

It is thought that the trestle will be converted into a nature trail for walking and cycling.

As reported yesterday (July 25) on nme.com, R.E.M. vocalist Michael Stipe is currently in a recording studio in the band’s hometown of Athens, where he is adding vocals to what will become the band’s twelfth studio album – the follow-up to 1998’s ‘Up’.

Speaking about the new record, he said: “We spent a lot of time experimenting with different approaches to each song, writing new songs, and experimenting with arrangements…we’re surprising ourselves.”