The work is worth around £400,000 over four years to the Durham-based company, part of Esh Group. The firm will deliver grass cutting, planting, pruning, weed control and other horticultural services across the University of Sunderland’s extensive estate, as part of a framework agreement
The grounds, spread over two principal areas separated by the River Wear, include over 12 hectares of lawns, flower beds, shrubbery and development plots and over 600 individual trees.
Facilities support manager at the university Steve Cowie said: "Deerness Fencing & Landscaping has a great track record of supporting the University of Sunderland through excellent grounds maintenance services - I believe for over 10 years now.
"The Deerness team works on campus all year round, mostly on a planned programme but can be on an emergency out-of-hours reactive service if necessary. The team has a tremendous knowledge of the estate, so this means we at the university benefit from consistent service delivery and regularly look to Deerness for knowledge and advice on environmental and biodiversity issues, and help in mitigating risks and seizing opportunities."
The contract win closely follows a number of awards, including a gold award in the Northumbria in Bloom Awards in the Hospitals, Hospices, Medical Centres and Universities category.
Deerness’ work went on to be further recognised as the University of Sunderland received an Award of Merit at the Sunderland in Bloom Civic Awards and Sunderland itself won Best Large City at both the Northumbria in Bloom Awards and the Britain in Bloom Awards.
Managing director Jim Bates said: "We’re proud and delighted to have been awarded the University of Sunderland contract for another term – and we are extremely pleased that our work has received such compliments and recognition from the judges at all of these prestigious awards. I’d like to thank the University and the City for their support and the teams for their hard work and commitment – these awards are well deserved."