We′re all going on a . . . pumping station hunt?

Paul Richardson embarks on a


People across the North East are being asked to go on a hunt with a difference – to find sewage pumping stations!

Residents and businesses could save themselves money, time and hassle by helping to identify private sewage pumping stations (PSPSs) attached to or close to their properties and, in the process, relieve themselves of the burden of their upkeep.

From October 1, 2016, water companies are required to take ownership of many private stations and responsibility for their maintenance, and Northumbrian Water Group is working to locate those in its area, which spans from Berwick to North Yorkshire and from the East coast to the Pennines.

The move to put the stations into Northumbrian Water′s ownership transfers running costs, as well as responsibility for repairs, maintenance and replacement – often at a cost upwards of £1,000 per pump – to the water company.

Due to their private ownership, there has previously been no register or map of private sewage pumping stations, which has led to this call for people to help to build a database.

The company is asking people to register any possible pumping stations on its website, so that eligibility for transfer by Northumbrian Water can be investigated. An online form has been set up at www.nwl.co.uk/stationhunt.

PSPSs are attached to homes or commercial premises that are situated at a lower level than the main sewers they feed into, pumping wastewater away from the properties.

Paul Richardson, project manager at Northumbrian Water, said: "Private pumping stations are a necessity for some properties but, because they generally sit and quietly work they are forgotten about.

"In the past, because they have been in private hands, there has been no register of their locations, so we need to create one, so that we can take full responsibility for their upkeep.

"We have managed to identify some stations, but we need the help of the public to let us know if they have one attached to their property. People can go to www.nwl.co.uk/stationhunt and register any pumps, so we can assess them for potential adoption. There is also a handy guide there, to help people identify a PPS."

For media information please contact Paul White on 0191 3015325.

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