A major Tynedale landmark and tourist attraction has received a "lifeline" financial boost from the Government.

Hexham Abbey has received a grant of £356,861 to be spent on much-needed repairs to the roofs of the Chancel East End, North Transept, and the Nave North Aisle, helping to secure the building for future generations.

Staff had previously raised concerns over the deterioration of the Abbey’s slate roof coverings, which have required continual repairs to ensure the building remains wind and water-tight.

The Abbey is one of 445 heritage organisations in England to have received cash from the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage.

The funding will allow the Westmorland slate and Welsh slate coverings to be carefully taken off, the removal of failed fixings and battens, repair and treatment of any decayed and infested exposed timber work, form new treated counter and tiling batten structure with breather membranes, re-lay the salvaged existing and new slates and renew and repair the failed lead items.

The Rector, the Rev David Glover, said: “By repairing the most badly-deteriorated sections of the Abbey roof, we are ensuring the Abbey will continue to thrive as a place of worship, pilgrimage and heritage, and continue to be a place of deep blessing to Hexham and the wider region.

“This project will provide heritage skill development and high-level training opportunities for the successful contractors as we work to preserve this wonderful building for future generations.

“We are also extremely grateful to the Hexham Abbey Restoration Trust which is providing the remaining funds to complete this crucial first stage of the Abbey Roof refurbishment.”

The news of the grant comes after Hexham Abbey revealed it had raised more than £83,000 as part of its Covid-19 bounce back appeal, with the local congregation and community showing great generosity.