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Northumbrian Water completes three-year flood reduction scheme

Northumbrian Water has completed a three-year partnership flood reduction scheme in North Tyneside, which will help protect more than 3,500 homes.

The utility company has been working with North Tyneside Council, the Environment Agency and supply partners, Esh-Stantec, on the £6 million project across Killingworth and Longbenton since July 2016.

The work has been carried out in three phases, with the first phase involving the installation of a new pipe which allowed partners to divert the Longbenton Letch out of the sewer network and directly into the nearby Forest Hall Letch.

The second phase saw the construction of three natural surface water storage areas on Killingworth Moor, to make sure that the additional flows into Forest Hall Letch would be held back during times of heavy rainfall.

And the final phase of the project involved the re-contouring of the south bank of Killingworth Lake and the planting of new trees and shrubs to help manage surface water sustainably.

A number of community initiatives have also been carried out as part of the three-year scheme, including providing wheelchair access for Killingworth Lakeside Park.

Bat boxes have also been installed in the nearby Gosforth Park Nature Reserve and three innovative floating islands have been created for Killingworth Lake.

The islands are “floating eco-systems” and were planted up with shrubs by children from West Moor Primary School, will help to keep the lake clear by sucking up nutrients and cleansing the water, as well as providing new habitats for wildlife above and below the water.

The partners have also worked with a number of other schools in the area to promote Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) activities, and designed a wheelchair trail activity sheet with Percy Hedley School to explore the new accessible areas.

"We are absolutely delighted to be putting the finishing touches on what has been a huge, joint effort to reduce the risk of flooding across Killingworth and Longbenton,” said Northumbrian Water’s sustainable sewerage manager, Steena Nasapen-Watson.

"We've already seen the benefits of this project, where the new storage basins were utilised during the recent heavy rainfall and helped to reduce the impact of surface water flooding locally.

"The project team, led by our project manager, Lynn Preston, have been delighted to spend some time in the community during the scheme, where we have also worked with a number of schools and community organisations to leave a lasting legacy, involving them in projects to enhance the area as well as improving the environment,” added Nasapen-Watson.

"We're pleased that this three-year project has had such a welcoming reception and we'd like to thank the community for their patience and understanding while we've carried out the work over the last three years."

An event to celebrate the completion of the project is being planned for later in the year and customers in the area will be invited.

Author: Jamie Hailstone,
Topic: Sewer Networks , Sustainability & social value , Water resources

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