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Last Updated: Tuesday, 24 February, 2004, 15:04 GMT
Former PoW camp given cash award
Harperley PoW camp
The camp will benefit from more tourist facilities
A former Prisoner of War camp, which has been turned into a tourist attraction, has been awarded 200,000.

Harperley PoW camp, which lost out on 2m from the BBC's 'Restoration' programme, has been awarded the money by Defra's Rural Enterprise Scheme.

The Weardale camp housed German and Italian prisoners during World War II.

The cash means the camp will now get a 1940s-style tearoom, a farm shop, a caravan site and other attractions for visitors.

'Flagship' project

The camp, which has a theatre and several wall murals painted by prisoners, is owned by James and Lisa Mcleod, who bought it in 2001 with plans to open it as a museum.

Mr Mcleod said the money would help them improve the experience for tourists.

He said: "We are going to keep the 1940s theme, there will be 1940s farm shop with the old cobbled street and shop fronts, a 1940s tearoom, garden centre and 34-pitch touring caravan site."

Mrs Mcleod said she hoped they would attract visitors from Europe - especially the relatives of prisoners at the camp.

"There are a lot of European tourists come over on the North Sea ferries and travel up the A68 to Scotland, so we hope we can get them to call in here and stay.

Adrian Vass from Defra said: "It is a flagship project for the Weardale valley and it will also be an investment in a strong historical monument."

"It will also help promote job creation in the area."

Harperley PoW camp was built in 1943 and was scheduled as an ancient monument by English Heritage in 2002.

PoW camp becomes monument
18 Jul 02  |  England
Murals discovered at PoW camp
02 Mar 02  |  England

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