Great Exhibition will showcase ′Power from poo′ innovation

Tony Rutherford with Steve Mayes


Northumbrian Water′s industry-leading "Power From Poo" will be built into this summer′s Great Exhibition of the North - as part of a special LEGO showcase!

LEGO artist Steve Mayes, who runs North Tyneside firm Brick This, has created an interactive model representing the company′s innovative Advanced Anaerobic Digestion (AAD) work, which uses sludge from wastewater treatment to create energy.

Northumbrian Water is the only water company in the UK to use 100% of its wastewater sludge in this way at facilities in Howdon, in North Tyneside, and at Bran Sands, on Teesside.

The model will be on display at the Mining Institute, on Newcastle′s Westgate Road, throughout the Great Exhibition of the North, alongside more than 40 other displays that Steve has created to showcase innovation and industry across the North of England.

Visitors will be able to drop LEGO "poo" bricks into the model′s toilet, lighting up a street scene and reflecting the Power From Poo process from start to finish.

Steve said: "Power From Poo is something that′s really innovative and Northumbrian Water is at the forefront of that, so it′s great to be able to have some fun and represent that process in LEGO format for the Great Exhibition of the North."

As well as working with Brick This, Northumbrian Water is a Supporting Partner of the Great Exhibition Of The North.

Tony Rutherford, Sludge Process Optimisation Controller at Northumbrian Water, said: "It′s fantastic to see our Advanced Anaerobic Digestion process brought to life in this way for what will be the biggest event in England this year.

"AAD takes the waste we flush away and creates power from it, which is then returned to the National Grid. It′s a real example of the circular economy in action, because you can imagine the power created being used in the homes that the waste came from, possibly even to cook food, bringing the whole process through a full cycle.

"It′ll be great to see this model in place alongside representations of other amazing things created in the North of England and I think visitors young and old will find it fascinating."

The free-to-enter LEGO exhibition runs throughout the Great Exhibition Of The North, from June 22 to September 9, at the Mining Institute, on Westgate Road, Newcastle. The Mining Institute is part of the Great Exhibition′s Innovation Trail. For more information, visit:

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 2017 Northumbrian Water was named Utility of the Year at the Utility Week Awards, for the second time in four years. The company has followed this up in 2018 by winning the UK Excellence Award at the British Quality Foundation (BQF) UK Excellence Awards, and Water Company of the Year at the Water Industry Achievement Awards. Northumbrian Water also received the Queen’s Award for Enterprise for sustainable development for a second time in 2014, which is accredited for five years. This recognises the company as a business which benefits the environment, society and the economy.

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