MP visits one of over 850 archaeological trenches dug by A1 in Northumberland

Hundreds of archaeological trenches have been dug along the route of the A1 dualling scheme in Northumberland.

Berwick MP Anne-Marie Trevelyan was invited to visit one of the Highways England’s trench sites at Rock Farm South, near Alnwick.

Surveys are being carried out ahead of the proposed upgrade of the A1 between Morpeth and Ellingham.

To date, over 850 trenches have been dug for archaeological excavations at key locations which also allows contractors to conduct necessary surveys.

Berwick MP Anne-Marie Trevelyan, second from the left, with Tara McCully (Senior Engineer, Costain Group PLC) , Tsuwun Bevan and Shiona MacDonald (Project Manager, Costain Group PLC).

Anne-Marie said: “I am amazed by the number of trenches that have been dug and I’m very pleased that we are only awaiting the Examiner’s recommendations and the Secretary of State’s.

"Hopefully Highways England and their contractors can start work very soon. I am immensely grateful to the team at Highways England, they have produced a highly imaginative and professional plan. I can’t wait to see their plan turn into reality.”

The MP, whose ‘Dual the A1’ campaign succeeded in guaranteeing the £290m needed to dual the section of road in 2015, has been keeping a close eye on the detailed plans at every stage.

The Planning Inspector’s official examination into the plans - a legal requirement with such large infrastructure projects - closed on July 5. There will now be a period of three months for the Examining Authority to write its report and make a recommendation to the Secretary of State. The Secretary of State will then have three months in which to make a decision.

Safety improvements are also planned north of Ellingham.

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