About the Project

Northumberland is a county of historic market towns, unspoilt coastline, and countryside and some of the most breath-taking views anywhere in the world.


As the County Town of Northumberland, Morpeth is the gateway to some of the most beautiful and picturesque countryside in England and, as such, must enjoy the appropriate infrastructure to showcase its many natural and historic attractions, not to mention support its vibrant local business community. In recent years, the town has endured increasing congestion, with just one main route through Morpeth town centre and over the Telford Bridge. The Morpeth Northern Bypass will release the town from rush hour gridlock and open up this part of the county to increased business development, economic regeneration and potential inward investment, further supported by the upgrading of the A1 through the county.

This website will keep you up to date with all the news, information, pictures and community projects associated with this exciting new road link. It will also be your direct link to those carrying out the project, who will post continuous updates throughout the project and answer any questions you may have. Carillion and our partner, Northumberland County Council are working hard to ensure this ambitious project is delivered on time, on budget and with minimum inconvenience. Thank you for your patience, we promise that you will not be disappointed with the result.

The Benefits

Morpeth Northern Bypass will remove barriers to development and create more sustainable communities through additional housing and by supporting economic growth. Over the next 60 years the benefits of the project will include:

  • A £47m of economic boost to the county (£7m for Morpeth, £23m for Wansbeck and £17m for Blyth Valley.)
  • The potential to create over 5,300 jobs across southeast Northumberland and between 1,700 and 3,000 jobs in Morpeth.
  • A reduction in travel times and costs between the A1 and southeast Northumberland. Firmson Wansbeck Business Park will save 37% in travel costs to the A1.
  • Opening up large areas north of Morpeth for development for housing and employment.
  • A reduction in congestion in Morpeth and improved local air quality.

Your New Road

The route of the Morpeth Northern Bypass has been carefully selected to have the maximum benefit to the local economy, improved local road infrastructure and minimum impact on the natural beauty environment of the area. The road will link the A1 to the already completed Pegswood Bypass and complete the link to Ashington and Blyth.

Morpeth Northern Bypass is 3.8km long extending from Whorral Bank Roundabout on the A197 north east of Morpeth, westward to the A1 trunk road.

The bypass comprises of a 7.3m wide single carriageway with a separate 2.5m wide combined cycleway/footway.

There is a new interchange creating easy access to the A1. The project involves constructing four road junctions, two bridge structures, two underpasses and one mammal tunnel to be constructed along the route of the bypass.

The scheme also consists of accommodation works, drainage works, street lighting, traffic signals, attenuation ponds, landscaping works, utility diversions and habitat creation.


Construction of the project is estimated to take approximately 20 months to complete. We want to keep you informed on the progress of the Morpeth Northern Bypass.

Take a look at the construction progress on the Delivering the Project page, so you know – at every stage – how the project is progressing.

The Planning timeline for the project is listed below:

  • 15 July 2013 – The application for the new road was submitted
  • 7 August 2013 – The application was accepted
  • October 2013 – December 2013: Development Consent Order (DCO) pre-examination
  • January 2014 – June 2014: The DCO examination stage
  • July 2014 – September 2014: The DCO decision stage
  • October 2014 -December 2014: Secretary of State approval secured
  • January 2015 – February 2015: Six-week DCO legal challenge period
  • January 2015 – February 2015: At the same time Department for Transport approval secured as final stage before construction begins
  • Spring 2015: Morpeth Northern Bypass enabling works
  • Spring 2017: Morpeth Northern Bypass completion

For more information visit the Northumberland County Council Planning portal click here

Click here to read more about the legal order providing powers to construct this road.

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