Our £3.5 million project at Tees Barrage is near completion

Large gate cylinder to replacement to take place thanks to player of the People's Postcode Lottery.

Picture of structure and scaffolding Tees Barrage major restoration project

Costing an estimated £3.5 million in total, with a contribution of around £600,000 towards the project thanks to players of People’s Postcode Lottery, the project is the most extensive repairs programme to be undertaken at the Barrage since it was built in 1995.

The final phase

The works to all four gates and cylinders - fundamental components of the Barrage – will ensure that the structure continues to fulfill its flood alleviation and tidal control role, which has helped regenerate a previously run-down stretch of the river to become a busy tourist and visitor attraction.

The final phase in the five-year project will see the replacement of one giant gate cylinders overnight Sunday 19 September. 

Players of People’s Postcode Lottery previously helped fund the replacement of two gate cylinders and now through an extra award from the PPL’s Postcode Earth Trust, the final two gate cylinders can be replaced.

George Poole, our project manager, said: “We’re very grateful for the continued support of the players of People’s Postcode Lottery which has enabled us to carry out vital maintenance and replacement work to this important landmark.” 

Improving the waterway and the environment

The replacement cylinder, weighing around 15 tons, lifts and lowers one of the four gates at the barrage. It will be craned into place overnight and connected to the gate the following week. Once tests are complete to check for leakage, stop logs will be lifted out on 3 October, and the gate will be able to operate normally.

George added: “Tees Barrage is not only a great feat of engineering it has played a vital role in improving the waterway and environment by alleviating flooding risk. It is now a popular visitor spot.

“The additional funding from players of People’s Postcode Lottery will also be used to help us use the barrage as an educational tool with the provision of a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematic (STEM) hub for local school children. The aim is to bring these subjects to a real-life setting.” 

A visitor hot spot

We're keen to encourage more people to take advantage of their local canal or river as research shows that spending time by water is good for both physical and mental health.

The construction of the Tees Barrage has made the location a visitor hot spot and has seen water sports in the area flourish. Costing £55 million to build, the barrage is an impressive structure standing 70 metres wide. The construction included a lock for boat navigation, fish passes for migratory fish and it even generates electricity from tidal power.