What's On

Sewage and Septic Systems

The Cessnock Local Government Area currently has over 4,000 on-site sewage management systems. On-site systems are concentrated in areas not provided with a reticulated sewer system and include the localities of Abernethy, Allandale, Big Yengo, Bishops Bridge, Black Hill, Branxton, Brunkerville, Buchannan, Bucketty, Buttai, Cedar Creek, Cliftleigh, Ellalong, Four Mile Creek, Heddon Greta, Kearsley, Keinbah, Laguna, Lochinvar, Lovedale, Loxford, Millfield, Mount View, Mount Vincent, Mulbring, Neath, North Rothbury, Nulkaba, Paynes Crossing, Pelton, Pokolbin, Quorrobolong, Richmond Vale, Rothbury, Sawyers Gully, Stockrington, Sweetmans Creek and Wollombi.

The majority of the systems are septic tanks with either absorption trenches or evapo-transpiration areas or Aerated Wastewater Treatment Systems (AWTS). Other systems include pump to sewer, pump-outs and worm farms.

Council monitors these on-site sewage management systems undertaking inspections of all systems within the City; the frequency of these inspections is based on risk classification. Systems that are in areas with limited risk and are well managed may only receive one inspection every five years.

Owner's responsibility

As a septic system owner you are responsible for ensuring that your septic system is safe and working properly. A failing septic system is a health risk for your family and the community and may be causing harm to the environment.

Please refer to The Easy Septic Guide for more detailed information on how to manage your septic system safely.

The following topics are covered in this guide:-

  • Septic Safe
  • What you need to know
  • Checking your Septic System
  • Understanding Your Septic System
  • How to Maintain a Healthy System – 17 Easy Tips
  • The Septic Shopping Guide
  • Background Information


If you are connected to the reticulated water and/or sewer systems of Hunter Water Corporation and have any questions about these systems all enquires should be directed to Hunter Water Corporation’s customer service personnel by telephoning 1300 657 657.

Council's Environmental Officers can be contacted on 4993 4100.

Millview Estate, Millfield

An area of Millview Estate, Millfield is not currently services by the existing Hunter Water Corporation (HWC) sewer system.  Due to the environmental sensitivity of the area (being within close proximity to Millfield Lagoon), the area is unsuitable for on-site sewage management.

Cessnock City Council has commenced a project that will install a pressurised sewer system to service this area.  The system will provide for the collection and dumping of sewage from twelve (12) residential lots into the existing HWC sewer system within Millfield.  The provision of this service will improve the wastewater management practices of existing developed properties and allow development to proceed on currently vacant allotment (subject to Council approval).

School Poster Design Competition

Competition winners are:- Alex Flood & Cody Robinson from Kearsley Public School & Jessica Heath fom Kurri Kurri Public School.

Congratulations to the three of you and also to all the students who participated. 

We hope to see you all entering this competition again next year.

Lifting the Lid

On-Site Sewage Management Education Campaign