New reservoir means clean water for 50,000

Construction work being carried out on the Hebron service reservoir
Construction work being carried out on the Hebron service reservoir

A NEW reservoir to hold up to 19million litres of water is set to be ready for use next month.

Work on the £3.2million project to replace two existing Northumbrian Water reservoirs on the site at Hebron, one of which began operating in 1923, started 12 months ago.

The facility will provide water to about 50,000 people in Widdrington, Stobswood, Ellington, Lynemouth, Ashington and Newbiggin.

At 120x100m in size and five metres deep, it is designed to be used for at least the next 50 years.

About 30,000 tonnes of soil has been removed and is being deployed elsewhere on the site, and 12,000 tonnes of concrete has been used in construction. Like one of the current reservoirs, the new one will look like a grassed bank from the outside.

Northumbrian Water’s Project Manager for the scheme Mick Abbott said: “Running one reservoir rather than two makes things simpler and it’s more economical.

“It was due to be completed about now, but we lost time because of the severe snowy weather in November and December.

“Testing is currently being carried out and if there are no problems, the reservoir should be operational next month.

“We explained to Hebron residents what would be happening and we showed them the plans for the site. We are keeping the road as clean as we can and so far there have been no complaints.”

The reservoir is divided into two halves to allow it to function when cleaning is carried out.

Most of the water, about 13.5million litres a day on average, comes from the treatment works near Warkworth.

Water from the River Coquet goes through a screening process before being pumped into the works.

The water is then filtered through sand to take out any remaining impurities.

Constant cleaning is carried out at each stage of the treatment process.

A much smaller amount of water is supplied to the Hebron Service Reservoir by the water treatment works at Fontburn.