MORE than 20 homes will be protected by a new £4.2m anti-flooding scheme in South Tyneside.
The scheme, on green space between Campbell Park Road and Mountbatten Avenue, Hebburn, is being developed by Seymour Civic Engineering Contractors (CEC), on behalf of Northumbrian Water.
When completed, it will reduce the risk of flooding to 21 homes on the Lakes Estate, mainly Thirlmere Court, where residents have been repeatedly hit by flooding, forcing some into temporary accommodation,
A total of 70,400 tons of earth is being removed before the installation of a storage tank, capable of holding 8,000 cubic metres of water.
Excess water will be retained in the tank, instead of flooding local homes, before being released into the main water system.
About 30 workers are employed in the flood alleviation scheme, which began in August last year, involving the construction of more than 450m of rider sewers and 20 manhole chambers to tackle localised incapacity in the sewer network.
Phase two, which is set for completion this October, will see the construction of a huge precast concrete gravity storm attenuation tank, including works to tackle surcharge within the main trunk sewer.
The green area, near Hebburn Comprehensive School and two primary schools, will later be reinstated and landscaped.
The scheme is also flying the flag for a new campaign aimed at highlighting the importance of civil engineering to modern society.
Derek Smith, chairman of the Institution of Civil Engineering (ICE) North East, this week unveiled banners at the site, as part of the This is Civil Engineering campaign. The Hebburn scheme is the first being used to publicise the campaign, which has been developed by ICE to encourage public awareness of the work involved in designing and supporting the infrastructure which is all around us.
Mr Smith said: “We are very proud of everything civil engineering contributes to the North East, and we are delighted to be working with Seymour Civil Engineering on these important projects across the region.
“We are grateful to Seymour for supporting this initiative, and we know there are more firms looking forward to getting involved and helping us to highlight the variety and importance of civil engineering to the general public.
“Most of us take for granted the contribution that civil engineering makes to society, but there is a very true saying, that ‘when you understand civil engineering, you see the world differently’.
“This is what this campaign aims to illustrate.”
Kevin Byrne, managing director of Seymour CEC, part of Hartlepool-based parent company, Renew Holdings, said: “Seymour are proud to be leading the way in supporting the This is Civil Engineering campaign.
“Often, it’s only when infrastructure fails or is compromised that the industry’s importance is recognised.
“We need more graduates and youngsters to enter the industry, and the ICE campaign is an excellent way to raise awareness.”
Established as a learned society in 1818, ICE has 80,000 members and provides a voice for civil engineering, while promoting best practice throughout the industry.