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The North of England’s gas distributer, Northern Gas Networks (NGN), is investing over £100,000 to upgrade the ageing gas mains in Market Place, Morpeth.

The essential project is part of NGN’s ongoing investment in the gas infrastructure in the area and will involve replacing over 500m of existing metal gas mains with more durable plastic pipes, to ensure the continued safe and reliable supply of gas to customers in Morpeth for years to come.

The seven-week project, which is due to start on Monday 31 July 2017, has been carefully planned in conjunction with Northumberland County Council.

In order to carry out the work safely and efficiently, the project will be carried out in three phases.  During Phase One a single lane closure will be in place on Bridge Street for approximately five weeks from 31 July.  Works will progress from St George’s URC Church towards Morpeth Town Hall.

Road users will still be able to access Bridge Street from the A192 via a one way system and traffic will be able to access Bridge Street towards Morpeth Clock Tower, but will not be able to proceed down Bridge Street. A signed diversion route via Newgate Street will be in place and access for residents and pedestrians will be maintained at all times.

Phase Two of the works is scheduled to begin on 4 September and take one week.  Work will begin outside Morpeth Town Hall and continuing past the Clock Tower up to the road crossing opposite the Tower Buildings.  To minimise disruption the team will be working through the night, with temporary four way traffic lights in place to ensure the smooth flow of traffic.  The traffic lights will be removed by 5am each morning.

Phase Three of the works is scheduled to begin on 8 September for one week and will take place from Tower Buildings to Oldgate Bridge.  No traffic management will be necessary during the final phase of the work.

Shops and businesses in the area will remain open as usual throughout the project.

NGN’s Customer Care Officers have been door-knocking local homes and businesses to make customers aware of the work, while on-site signage will advise motorists of the work happening in the area.

NGN recently held a community drop in session in the area where customers were invited to find out more about the project and meet the team.  The session was well attended and provided an opportunity for customers to ask questions and share their views.

During the project, NGN’s customer care officers will be working with representatives from the local town to help support the upcoming Morpeth Food and Drink Festival taking place on 7 & 8 October.  NGN have agreed to be the ‘Park and Ride’ sponsor and will be working hard to help promote this fantastic community event.

Richie Manuel, Construction Services Area Manager for Northern Gas Networks said: “At NGN we fully appreciate the impact our works can have on customers, and would like to thank the local businesses and residents for their patience and understanding.

“We have worked closely with Northumberland County Council to carefully plan these works and will be doing all we can to minimise disruption to customers. We will endeavour to complete the project as quickly and safely as possible and keep customers updated as the work progresses.

“We would like to take this opportunity to apologise for any inconvenience caused during these works and thank everyone for their patience and support while we carry out this essential upgrade.”

The Market Place, Morpeth project will be registered as a Considerate Constructors Scheme site, following key principles to ensure minimal impact on the environment, customers and the community and observing the highest standards of safety.

For further information about the project please contact NGN’s Customer Care team on 0800 040 7766, option 3 or email customercare@northerngas.co.uk.

Anyone that smells gas or suspects Carbon Monoxide should call the National Gas Emergency Service immediately on 0800 111 999. This line is in operation 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.