Northeast tourist attractions closed due to storm damage


Adverse weather conditions throughout the weekend and this week have forced some of the region’s most popular tourist sites and attractions to close as they face the consequences of damaged property – with some saying it would be a “threat to life” if they chose to open.

The latest in a long string of varied weather conditions brought Storm Corrie and a 70mph wind to North East England late on Sunday.

This followed Storm Malik which downed trees, damaged power lines and ripped roofs off homes on Saturday.

Read more: Storm Malik: Kevan Jones calls for an investigation into the power grid

Due to the weather, owners lost power and heating in parts of the area, with some tourist attractions also falling victim to the weather.

Saturday and Sunday, Beamish: The Living Museum of the North was closed to visitors due to debris at the site.

In a statement, the tourist attraction took to social media on Sunday (January 30) to say: “After assessing the museum site for damage from today’s extreme weather conditions, for safety reasons , we will not be able to open on Sunday.

The Beamish Museum was closed Saturday and Sunday due to inclement weather at the Stanley facility. Photo: BEAMISH MUSEUM.

“With fallen trees and debris around the site, we will have to spend tomorrow carrying out a full assessment and clean-up operation. We are sorry for any disappointment – the safety of our visitors, staff and volunteers always comes first.

“We will contact ticket holders by email. Thanks again for everyone’s patience and support, stay safe everyone.

Elsewhere in the region, Raby Castle will remain closed today (Monday 31 January) to give staff on site time to clean up downed historic trees and other damaged property, caused by Storm Malik.

Read more: 4,000 people in Tyne & Wear and County Durham have no electricity

A statement from the castle read: “The estate team continues to repair the damage caused by Storm Malik. Unfortunately, many historic trees have fallen in the park for many years.

“Our property team is working hard to clean up the mess and make the park safe for visitors to return as soon as possible.

“We hope to reopen tomorrow, another update will follow.”

The Northern Echo: Downed trees and damaged property led to the closure of Raby Castle on Sunday and until today (January 31).  Picture: RABY'S CASTLE.Downed trees and damaged property led to the closure of Raby Castle on Sunday and until today (January 31). Picture: RABY’S CASTLE.

It’s not just inland venues that are being affected by the weather, after Hamsterley Forest in County Durham announced it would also close on Monday to assess damage from storms Malik and Corrie.

Forestry England, which looks after the green space, said the action was taken, due to the ‘threat to the lives’ of visitors, and warned visitors against traveling to the beauty spot .

A statement from the agency said: “Due to another storm expected on Monday morning, we have made the decision to close Hamsterley Forest on Monday. This will allow us time to assess the damage caused by the storm.

Read more: Storm Malik: Compensation for power outages in County Durham

“During this time, please do not access the forest as there are likely to be dangerous and dangerous trees on the trail network. There will be another update on Monday regarding the potential reopening of the forest.”

A similar closure notice is also in place at Durham Botanic Garden to allow staff to clean up, as well as a temporary closure of reception at Palace Green Library Durham, due to storm damage.

However, access to the Museum of Archaeology, Durham Light Infantry Collection Gallery and Barker Research Library (researchers and students only) will remain.

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