Prestigious regional award for sewer project in town

The group representing the North Morpeth Strategic Sewer project celebrate being the joint winner of the award.
The group representing the North Morpeth Strategic Sewer project celebrate being the joint winner of the award.

A collaborative scheme to provide a sustainable waste water strategy as a result of housing growth in Morpeth has received a top regional accolade.

The North Morpeth Strategic Sewer was a joint winner of the Royal Town Planning Institute North East Award for Planning Excellence with the new town centre library in South Shields – known as The Word.

The Morpeth project was initiated as a result of work getting under way on developments in this area of the town, combined with the construction of the Morpeth Northern Bypass that is set to facilitate additional new homes on the former St George’s Hospital site.

Working in partnership with Northumberland County Council, Taylor Wimpey North East, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear NHS Foundation Trust, Linden Homes, Persimmon Homes North East and the Homes and Communities Agency, Northumbrian Water was able to construct a strategic sewer to serve multiple development sites in an approach devised to meet both the current and future needs of the town and its residents.

Richard Warneford, waste water director at Northumbrian Water, said: “The project is a great example of our collaborative approach to putting the needs of our customers and stakeholders at the heart of what we do.

“The recognition afforded by this award reflects the emphasis given by central Government to aligning investment with infrastructure to support the delivery of new homes.

“This project demonstrates how important engagement in the planning process is for utility companies and we are thrilled our industry-leading approach in this area has been acknowledged by the judges.”

He added that the scheme also provides a range of benefits to the wider Morpeth community.

Coun John Riddle, cabinet member responsible for planning at the county council, said: “This is a great example of partnership working between the council and key stakeholders, which has ensured that important infrastructure is provided ahead of planned development taking place.

“It represents the council’s firm commitment to working collaboratively to ensure a strategic approach to infrastructure delivery.”