Ground is now being broken on a new multi million pound Welcome Buildingin Bishop Auckland. It will stand overlooking the Market Place from 2018.
The building, which will serve as an information hub for local residents, visitors and tourists, has been commissioned by regional charity, Auckland Castle Trust, as part of a £70m project to revitalise the area.
The new building has been to designed to resemble a great wooden siege engine and will form a direct link between the Castle and the town centre.
The design includes a 29m high tower with a 15m viewing platform, offering views across the Castle grounds.
Once completed it will provide a starting point for visitors to Bishop Auckland, as well as a meeting space for community events.
The Welcome Building’s ground breaking marks one of the first visible signs of Auckland Castle Trust’s revitalisation project.
Ultimately this will include a Spanish Art Gallery, Mining Art Gallery, Walled Garden, Faith Museum and fully restored, Bishop’s Palace.