Businesses briefed on bypass project

POTENTIAL contractors for Morpeth’s Northern Bypass scheme have been briefed about what they can expect if they are selected.

Northumberland County Council met with businesses at Longhirst Hall last week to advise them of the proposals, the procurement process and the potential supply chain opportunities.

The event promoted the use of local employment and the provision of training opportunities for county residents. It also included a question and answer session where contractor firms could discuss key issues with officers from the authority.

Funding for the new road, which will link the A197 at Whorral Bank to the A1 south of Fairmoor, has already been secured, with the Department for Transport contributing £21million and Northumberland County Council picking up the rest of the tab, estimated at about £10million.

If the expected final approval is granted by the Planning Inspectorate, construction work on the bypass is expected to begin in autumn 2014 and the scheme should be completed by summer 2016.

The new transport link will unlock development sites to the north of the town and boost the economy across south east Northumberland as a whole by improving connections for business to major transport routes.

For more information about the scheme, visit