An army of volunteers descended on a popular outdoor education centre this weekend for its annual makeover.

For the last 26 years, Weardale House, in Ireshopeburn, has provided a base for children and young adults from across the country to explore the great outdoors.

It is a place of happy memories for countless people, so it is hardly surprising that when staff needed a hand to repaint the 68-bed residential centre they were inundated with willing volunteers.

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Nearby businesses were also keen to help, with Jewson’s, Screwfix and B&Q in Consett donating brushes, rollers and gallons of free paint, and Tow Low Carpets providing free flooring.

Danny Woodford-Phillips, head of the centre, said it was heart-warming to see so many people turn up to support Weardale House, which is affiliated with Herrington Burn YMCA and is a registered charity.

“We have been here a long time and it is surprising how many people know about us or have come to stay here,” he said.

“I think a lot of people have fond memories of the place and everyone rallies together when we need some help.”

Weardale House is located in the heart of the dale and offers outdoor education breaks and activity days to schools, youth groups and other organisations.

Canoeing, rock climbing, ghyll scrambling and caving are just some of the activities it organises.

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