A North East scheduled ancient monument is gearing up to open its doors to the public in a rare chance to visit and see behind the scenes.
Tees Cottage Pumping Station, which holds five steaming events every year, is offering visitors the chance to come and experience everything the Victorian water works has to offer.
Established in 1849, in Darlington, the works owned by Northumbrian Water, used to supply drinking water to the whole of Teesside.
The site which is volunteer-run is full of local engineering history and still has two original pumping engines; one with a two-cylinder compound steam beam engine supplied from its original Lancashire boilers and driving its original pumps.
The other engine is a two-cylinder gas engine, the largest preserved example in Europe, also driving its original pumps. The engines are superb examples of Victorian architecture.
There is lots to see and do, from watching the miniature railway in action, admiring the iron work in the smithy, seeing first hand the site still able to pump water to relaxing and having a cuppa in the tearoom. All money raised during opening days is invested into the continued improvements to this ancient monument.
Phil Doran, Chairman of Tees Cottage Pumping Station, said; "We′re looking forward to opening the doors to the public this weekend, in our first steaming event of 2018, and welcoming visitors to this unique heritage site.
"I encourage anyone interested in seeing this wonderful Scheduled Ancient Monument to come and visit. There is certainly lots to see and do."
Tees Cottage Pumping Station is open to the public between 11:00-17:00 (last entry 16:00) on Sunday and Sunday, 1-2 April. The site is located to the River Tees on Coniscliffe Road, Darlington DL3 8FT.
Louise Hunter, Corporate Affairs Director at Northumbrian Water, said: "Tees Cottage Pumping Station is right here on our doorstep for anyone wanting to visit and is a fine example of amazing heritage.
"We′re immensely proud of this historic site and of the partnership we have with the volunteers of Tees Cottage Pumping Station who do a wonderful job in helping to preserve it."
There is a small entrance charge of £5.00 for adults, £4.00 for concessions and children under the age of 16 are given FREE entry. Dogs are also welcomed onto the site. Visitors with mobility issues and parents with pushchairs, can gain access to much of the site however due to development laws, some areas of the site are not accessible to wheelchairs and mobility scooters.
For more information about Tees Cottage Pumping Station please visit www.teescottage.co.uk or find them on Facebook, ‘Tees Cottage Pumping Station′.
Interested in becoming a volunteer? There are some volunteering opportunities available to join the fantastic team at Tees Cottage Pumping Station! From helping out in the tearoom, to managing the gas engine, controlling the beam engine, looking after the boiler, to helping in the smithy and to doing general maintenance work around the site.
For further information please e-mail Phil Doran at, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.teescottage.co.uk/volunteer/
For further media information, call 0191 3015678.
Northumbrian Water Limited supplies 2.7 million customers in the North East with both water and sewerage services, trading as Northumbrian Water, and 1.8 million customers in the South East with water services, trading as Essex & Suffolk Water.
In the most recent survey by the Consumer Council for Water, Northumbrian Water was named the UK′s most trusted water company by its customers. 2017 also saw Northumbrian Water named the world′s most ethical water company for the seventh successive year and Utility of the Year at the Utility Week Awards, for the second time in four years.
Abbey Road, Pity Me, Durham DH1 5FJ. Telephone 0345 6047468. Website: www.nwl.co.uk