To provide a warm and welcoming café for residents and visitors in this fascinating village in the heart of the North Pennines
About the project
Nenthead is a remote village high in the North Pennines, with a population of around 400 people. It’s a marginal place in terms of its location; lying right on the eastern boundary of Cumbria, far away from the bustle of the Lake District and primary centres of population and administration. It’s high (1,450ft above sea level) - we get a bit of snow up here! We have plenty of space and fresh air and wide open views.
In the centre of the village is a redunant chapel. Built in 1873 and used until 2002; it now stands empty and forlorn. People in Nenthead have rallied together to rescue this building and to turn it into something useful. We would like to provide a warm space in the village where people can spend time informally together - there's no such place at the moment. We would also like to share Nenthead's colourful story and beautiful landscape with visitors.
Nenthead has always been a self-sufficient and dynamic community - we run many of our own services including; a play area, a village hall, public toilets, village shop and post office and even a community snowplough. The chapel project is a community social enterprise (an Industrial Provident Society) and will be owned and run by community shareholders. If you are interested in being a shareholder, please get in touch.
Once the chapel is transformed (we aim to open in Spring 2018), it will become:
- A warm and welcoming café with events and activities for all
- A wifi enabled building with laptops available for all to use;
- A space that could be used to provide healthcare, chiropodists, hairdressers, complimentary medicine etc;
- Extra room for for Nenthead Community Shop and North Pennine Cycles
- Hot desking space for other small businesses;
- Attractive gallery and retail space for local/ regional artists and craft workers;
- A focal point for visitors and residents who want to explore the colourful history of the area or research family links to Nenthead and Alston Moor
The Heritage Lottery Fund and our local council have funded the development stage of this project - we have planning permission, detailed plans and costings, all sorts of surveys have been done and we have 92 potential shareholders waiting to invest in our project. We have a comprehensive and viable business plan so we know this will work. We've got interpretation plans, audience engagement plans, marketing plans - you name it, we've got it.
What we need now is funding to match the Heritage Lottery Funding and we're hoping to raise the last £4,000 through Crowdfunder. If you want to be involved, if you have a soft spot for Nentead or would like to become acquainted with this forgotten but beautiful part of Cumbria, then please support our project and then come and see us. We'd be delighted to see you.