EURO MP Fiona Hall has visited Kielder Water and Forest Park to see how cash is being used to support local businesses and increase tourism.
She visited the area with the Northumberland Uplands Local Action Group (NULAG) and saw projects such as the Kielder Observatory and the Calvert Trust along with Bellingham Heritage Centre and Humshaugh Village Shop.
Fiona said: “Kielder is such a beautiful place and I’m delighted to see European money being spent on bringing more people here to enjoy it.
“In turn those visitors put more money into the local economy.
“Putting control of funding in the hands of a local action group ensures it is spent on things that can make a real difference to the local community.
“Who better to decide what to spend money on than the people who live and work here?
“The current funding period finishes next year but I hope NULAG will be able to maintain momentum and keep up their support for local ventures.
“The projects I saw are creating and safeguarding jobs, protecting the natural habitat and providing facilities that will boost vital tourism in the area.”
Peter Cockerill, chief executive at Calvert Trust Kielder said: “The European funding we have received has made such a difference to us – we just cannot move forward without the valuable partnerships that we have in place.”
Tom Burston, NULAG group co-ordinator, said: “It was great to spend time with Fiona and show her some of the projects that our group has been funding. Administering funding this way empowers us to support innovation and look for lots of joined up benefits from development projects.”