Berwick MP 'excited to see diggers in the ground' as A1 dualling scheme edges closer
Further survey works have been carried out in preparation for dualling of the A1 in Northumberland.
It is nearly seven years since plans to upgrade 13 miles of single carriageway between Morpeth and Ellingham were announced with a £290 million commitment from the Government.
The latest survey works by Highways England aim to help inform ongoing design work ahead of an expected start date between July and September 2022.
A Highways England spokesperson said: “Last month we undertook surveys to help us further develop our understanding of the land and geography of the A1 Morpeth to Ellingham scheme. We are currently carrying out archaeological trial trenching surveys. These surveys are to better inform the ongoing design work.
“The next hearings for the Development Consent Order Examination for the scheme will take place virtually from week commencing June 7.
"Construction of the scheme is subject to the Secretary of State decision expected in January 2022, following the Development Consent Order Examination which finishes in July 2021. More information is available on the Planning Inspectorate website.”
Berwick MP Anne-Marie Trevelyan, in a video message on her newsletter, revealed she had also managed a sneak peek of the survey works being done.
“It’s really exciting to have a first glimpse of the works going on just north of Morpeth as the A1 dualling starts to happen,” she said. “There has been a lot of activity here testing the soils.
"I’m looking forward to meeting with Highways England in a few weeks’ time to hear more detail of what they have discovered and the progress they are making. It’s genuinely exciting to see diggers in the ground. Our road is starting to be built.”
The scheme involves upgrading eight miles between Morpeth and Felton, including construction of a new dual carriageway bypassing the existing A1 between Priests Bridge and Burgham Park.
Between Alnwick and Ellingham a further five miles of the existing A1 will be upgraded to dual carriageway.
It is also planned to construct four new compact grade separated junctions at Highlaws, Fenrother, West Moor and Charlton Mires; a new bridge where the A1 cross over the River Coquet parallel to the existing bridge; and a new accommodation bridge at Heckley Fence.
The scheme has an estimated completion date of 2024-25.