Tyne & Wear

Hadrian's Wall £11m visitor centre given go-ahead

The Sill Image copyright Northumberland National Park Authority
Image caption The building has been designed to fit in with the surrounding landscape

A £11.2m visitor centre and youth hostel on Hadrian's Wall has been given the go-ahead.

The Sill National Landscape Discovery Centre in Northumberland is expected to create about 117 jobs and attract 100,000 visitors each year.

Replacing facilities from the 1960s at Once Brewed, near Hexham, the scheme is predicted to bring in £3m each year.

Northumberland National Park Authority chairman John Riddle said it will bring benefits you "cannot put a price on".

Approved by the authority's development committee, the new centre also includes a cafe as well as office and recreation space.

Mr Riddles said: "The long term gains of the project include economic growth and job creation which will offer a step-change benefit for the whole of the North East."

Image copyright Northumberland National Park Authority
Image caption It's hoped the centre will attract 100,000 visitors each year

The building has been designed to fit in with the surrounding landscape and will use sustainable energy such as solar thermal water heating and woodchip heating.

The team is now applying for £3m match funding and is submitting a bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund for the remaining £6.9m to build the centre.

An outcome is expected early 2015.

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