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Council secures £500,000 for further restoration works at Killhope Lead Mining Museum

Restoration works to “protect the future” of the popular Killhope Lead Mining Museum in Weardale are set to take place throughout this year, thanks to a funding boost.

Killhope wheel

Durham County Council has secured £500,000 from the Government’s Cultural Investment Fund to carry out a series of urgent works at the attraction.


The project will include repairs to the underground mine, washing floor, mine shop, buddle house, and jigger house.


It follows recently completed works – also supported by Government funding – to safeguard the site’s Armstrong wheel, mine cart ramp, launder, and water race bridges.


And while it means the venue will have to close for the 2024 season, museum staff will be delivering a ‘Killhope in the Community’ programme across the county during the closure.


Cllr Elizabeth Scott, the council’s Cabinet member for economy and partnerships, said: “We’re delighted to have secured funding for these essential works, which will enable us to protect the future of the museum and prevent the loss of its unique features.


“The grant comes from the Museum Estate and Development Fund part of the Government’s Culture Investment Fund, administered by Arts Council England, and we are very thankful to them for awarding us this money.


“We need to do the works during the warmer months, and they will restrict access to the site and visitor attractions to such an extent that a temporary closure is necessary. This will also enable us to complete the works safely, and in the shortest timescale possible.


“We appreciate the temporary closure will come as a disappointment to the many people who enjoy visiting the museum, particularly those who may have been planning to visit this Easter weekend.


“During this temporary break in service we will be delivering a ‘Killhope in the Community’ programme to take the Killhope story on the road across the county. This will be delivered by Killhope’s staff.


“We look forward to completing these works and welcoming people back to a working and moving museum that will delight visitors and local communities for many years to come.”


Durham County Council is contributing £50,000 to the project, with a fully restored Killhope Lead Mining Museum now expected to reopen for the 2025 season.


For more details about the museum visit


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