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Ouseburn Wild Talks | Water Quality in the Ouseburn – Challenges and Solutions

February 29 @ 6:00 pm 7:15 pm

We are delighted to welcome Dr David Werner to discuss his work in exploring the health of our blue corridor, the Ouseburn. Part of the Ouseburn Wild Talks series, hosted in collaboration with Ouseburn Farm and the Ouseburn Trust. 

This event if free and open for all to attend as part of the Wild Ouseburn project. Book your free ticket in the link opposite.


The Reece Foundation commissioned Newcastle University to undertake an analysis of water quality in the Ouseburn as it was concerned that pollution was having a detrimental effect on the Ouseburn valley as a healthy green space for people and wildlife. 

Our investigation confirmed that water quality in Jesmond Dene and the Ouseburn Valley is inadequate for a well-used urban green space. Innovative methods using environmental DNA showed that water quality is changeable and depending on the weather conditions. During one September storm event 72-77% of all bacteria in the Ouseburn originate from the sewer system. A partnership comprising the Reece Foundation, Newcastle University, Northumbrian Water, Newcastle City Council, Urban Green, the Environment Agency and other key stakeholders has now been established to restore the Ouseburn back to a healthy state. All stakeholders are welcome to join this endeavour.


Dr David Werner is Professor of Environmental Systems Modelling at Newcastle University. His research group is developing innovative methods to rapidly survey, map, and communicate waterborne hazards. This includes the development of an innovative suitcase laboratory for molecular microbiology, and the use of environmental DNA for faecal pollution source attribution and quantitative microbial risk assessment. He works with academic, charity, and industry partners in the UK, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Brazil, India, Nepal, and Thailand.

Photo credit: The Ouseburn Trust

Ouseburn Road
Newcastle-uopn-Tyne, NE1 2PA