One-way system drives ahead

MORPETH residents will be able to have their say on how best to deal with a one-way system for six weeks.

The county council has announced that the temporary restriction in the town centre will begin on January 16 and moves are under way to organise a public meeting for later this month.

It is being imposed as Northumbrian Water needs to replace a 300m section of water pipe from 1 Market Place to 69 Bridge Street as it is in a poor structural condition. Due to the nature of the location, it has been decided to open cut the new main within the highway and one lane will be closed as a result.

This means that traffic will need to go clockwise along Bridge Street towards the Clock Tower from Telford Bridge and those coming in from the north will have to turn off to Manchester Street from Newgate Street.

The one-way system also takes in Stanley Terrace and Damside back round to the Telford Bridge. Works in Stanley Terrace and the widening of the bus station link road will be completed before the works start in Bridge Street.

Dick Phillips, Network Manager at Northumberland County Council, said: “We will be carrying out a consultation between now and the start of the works and I will be meeting with the Chamber of Trade at its next meeting.

“I have already met with Morpeth Town Council and it is helping us to arrange a public meeting. This will hopefully take place in the next couple of weeks.

“I’ve spoken to local taxi drivers and hopefully they will be able to attend.”

The authority is minimising disruption in the long-term by arranging for other schemes in the town centre to be carried out at the same time.

Northern Gas Networks will replace ageing metal gas mains with more reliable plastic pipe and Dransfield Properties will signalise the junction by St George’s United Reformed Church, which is among the works linked to its supermarket development in Low Stanners.