A PIECE of the region’s industrial heritage has closed due to serious safety and structural issues.

All entry to Tees Cottage Pumping Station, in Coniscliffe Road, Darlington, has been banned, and all upcoming events have been cancelled, including the historic Jowett car rally which was due to take place this weekend.

A spokesman for Northumbrian Water, which owns the site, said: “As part of a routine inspection of all our sites, serious safety and structural issues were identified at Tees Cottage Pumping Station and we had to take the difficult decision to temporarily stop all access.

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“We are currently in discussions and working with volunteers to restore access as soon as we can.

“We really appreciate the valuable work of the volunteers over many years and are keen to continue that partnership in the future.

“We appreciate how disappointing it is that events have had to be cancelled, but as a responsible business, people’s safety must be the priority.”