One of Northumberland’s most recognisable historic landmarks has had essential work completed on its roof after it was awarded a grant from the Culture Recovery Fund.

Hexham Abbey received a grant of just over £364,000 from the Culture Recovery Fund, covering nearly 80% of the cost of the works – with the remaining amount being met by the Hexham Abbey Restoration Trust.

The Abbey was closed to all activities from January 4 to March 31 so that the essential repairs to its roofing could be carried out, which began in November 2020.

The Chancel East End, North Transept and Nave North Aisle were the worst affected areas of the roof and all needed major repair works.

Originally built in AD 674 as a dedication to St Andrew, the Abbey was further developed into its current form during the 12th centuries, with additions around the turn of the 20th century too.

The work consisted of several tasks, including the removal of Westmorland slate and Welsh slate coverings.

The Rev’d David Glover, Rector, Hexham Abbey, said: “The refurbishment of significant areas of Hexham Abbey roof has been a major project ensuring the protection of the building both as a place of worship and as a heritage site of major national significance.”

The work was completed by Hodgson Sayers, whose managing director John Sayers said: “The Abbey is one of the earliest Christian buildings in the country, drawing in worshippers and visitors, both national and international, making it a true gem in the region’s crown and one that requires continual maintenance to make sure that it can continue to be enjoyed for many more years to come.”