A NORTH Pennines visitor centre is set to reopen after lockdown with a brand new identity.

The attraction at the former Wesleyan Methodist Church in Nenthead, currently known as Nenthead Arts and Visitor Centre, will re-open after lockdown restrictions ate lifted as The Hive.

The venue opened last year after a £1.7m Heritage Lottery Fund grand brought the dreams of its supporters to life.

The chapel had sat closed, neglected, and in disrepair - but the enthusiasm of locals to restore it for the community saw a renovation take place to rejuvenate the building.

The new name has been chosen to reflect the wide variety on offer to visitors of all ages, and the flurry of activity supporters hope will take place there.

The chair of Nenthead Chapel Enterprise Limited, Sandra Mackenzie, said the previous name didn’t portray the central role the former chapel is once again playing in people’s lives.

She said: “Hive suggests ‘busy, active, creative, building something together’. And that’s what we think the centre is doing and what we want it to do for many years to come.

“We had got into our stride with the café, dining experiences, live music and art exhibitions and word of mouth was spreading. Rather than sit on our hands during lockdown we wanted to make sure that when we came out of it, we had as strong a brand as possible.”

As well as the fresh name, the centre will also be treated to a new website, signage, and an emphasis on promoting Nenthead's rich mining and social heritage, as well as the natural beauty of the North Pennines.

Initially, The Hive will be concentrating on its café and bookings for private celebrations before it gets back to its full range of live events.