Royal recognition for Newcastle University’s water research

25th April 2024

We are thrilled to share the news of Newcastle University’s prestigious Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education, which celebrates their exceptional contributions to water research.

We’re proud to have supported some of this groundbreaking research by Newcastle University in the Ouseburn, which is focused on finding solutions to global water challenges.

This award recognises efforts to translate scientific and engineering innovations into practical applications that enhance water security, not only in the UK but also worldwide.

Newcastle University’s interdisciplinary approach and collaborative partnerships have been key to their success. From conducting vital research in the Ouseburn to working with communities, industries, governments, and NGOs, their efforts have had a profound and lasting impact on water security, tackling issues ranging from floods and droughts to water quality and public health.

Professor David Werner explains: “The award recognises the university’s long-standing excellence in water research, exemplified by our work which has been supported by the Reece Foundation, particularly in addressing pollution concerns in the Ouseburn.”

Anne Reece, Chair of the Reece Foundation said:

“Our trustees have been proud to contribute significant funds to support Newcastle University’s research endeavours, including analysing water quality in the Ouseburn.

“This research has not only identified challenges but also informed visionary projects like The Ouse Burn Way, which holds the promise of transforming the local environment while addressing broader issues such as biodiversity and climate change.

“The Ouse Burn Way project exemplifies how research-driven solutions can offer both recreational opportunities and environmental benefits, including clean water strategies that are integral to its success.”

Newcastle University’s experts are at the forefront of monitoring and improving water quality for public and environmental health. Their research addresses legacy industrial waste contamination of freshwaters, combined Sewer Outfall (CSO) pollution, persistent pollutants, and detecting Covid-19 in wastewater.

Professor Richard Dawson, Director of Research, School of Engineering, Newcastle University, said:

“Water is humanity’s most valuable resource. It’s essential to food and energy security, health and wellbeing, economic prosperity, and all life on Earth. Water security is threatened by pressures like pollution, over-use, ecological damage and climate change – which is altering patterns of rainfall further increasing the risks of droughts and floods.

“Our work is solutions-focused, and this award recognises our effort to scale our science and engineering into deployable technologies, policies and practice that have improved water security in the UK and countries around the world.”

Run by the Royal Anniversary Trust, the Queen’s Anniversary Prizes celebrate excellence, innovation and public benefit in work carried out by UK colleges and universities. This is the fourth time Newcastle University has been awarded a Queen’s Anniversary Prize.

Back to News