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Chester-le-Street flood prevention scheme


Chester-le-Street has a long history of flooding. The work around Chester Burn will reduce this risk.

EU Regional Development FundBackground

Chester Burn runs through the centre of Chester-le-Street but is mostly hidden as it was covered over in the 1960s which then led to the development of a market place, supermarket and car parking facilities over it.

In June 2012, more than 100 homes and businesses at the northern end of the town where affected by flooding and Chester Burn was the main cause.

We have completed flood prevention work with Northumbrian Water and the Environment Agency at the eastern and western sections of the Burn, but needed to do further work to reduce flood risks in the longer term.

Icon for pdf Chester-le-Street flood prevention update transcript (PDF, 82.5kb)

The flood prevention scheme

Chester Burn flood prevention image

We have worked with the Environment Agency to model what effects potential work will have to prevent flooding. The results show that the work we are doing will reduce the risk of flooding from a 'one in 100' year storm.

The Burn and marketplace are in a conservation area and the work complements its surroundings. The war memorial has stayed in its current place, and the marketplace has moved to a much more prominent position towards Front Street..

Phase 1 - January to early summer 2019 - complete

What we did:

  • refurbished the Red Carpet area and Front Street to provide a focal point and community space
  • move the marketplace to the new Red Carpet area, east along South Burns, towards Front Street

Phase 2 - early summer 2019 to winter 2020 - complete

What we did:

  • removed the fixed market stalls
  • opened up a 90m stretch of the Burn to create an open channel running from the road at South Burns down to the Red Carpet area
  • landscaped the opened area to include new footpaths and seating, providing a haven for wildlife and storage for flood water during severe storms

Phase 3 - July 2019 to October 2019 - complete

What we did:

  • extend the flood wall to the west of the viaduct
  • relocate the sewer at Cone Terrace to increase channel's capacity

Funding the scheme

The scheme cost £6.2 million and is funded by us, the Environment Agency and the European Regional Development Fund.

Environment Agency Logo
EU Regional Development Fund Logo square

In partnership with

  • Environment Agency
  • EU Regional Development Fund square