A popular North East attraction is to reopen, weeks  after Storm Babet forced it to close.

Damage caused to the riverside front of the National Glass Centre (NGC) by the ferocious storm closed it on Monday, October 19. Repair work is continuing, but the Sunderland venue will reopen today (Wednesday, November 15).

Rachel Smith, NGC director, said: “We’re delighted to be reopening, though things will be a little bit different for a while as we continue to repair the storm damage.

The Northern Echo: Dale Chihuly Blue Sea Form, 1990., one of the many exhibits at the National Glass Centre,

“Our team has worked hard to make changes so that we can offer visitors a packed programme of exhibitions, events, activities and shopping.

“The downstairs entrance and the Glass Yard Cafe are still closed, so we’ve temporarily relocated our much-loved shop upstairs, with its selection of beautiful, locally crafted glass and ceramic artworks and jewellery, as well as homeware, toys and gifts.”

The venue is planning to relocate the café upstairs in the coming weeks.

In the meantime, the venue’s newest exhibition, Glass World, will be open in the main NGC gallery. The exhibition celebrates Sunderland’s place in the international network of artists working in glass.

Glass World presents a range of objects created by 30 artists from, or based, in countries ranging from Canada to New Zealand and Argentina to Japan.

The Northern Echo: Peter Bremers, Metamorphosis 45, 2001, one of the many exhibits at the National Glass Centre, SunderlandPeter Bremers, Metamorphosis 45, 2001, one of the many exhibits at the National Glass Centre, Sunderland (Image: DAVID WILLIAMS)

NGC’s Collections Gallery and Stories of Glass permanent exhibition will also be open to enjoy.

The centre’s ever-popular glass blowing demonstrations will continue – details of demonstration times will be on NGC’s website and social media.

“We’ve a jam-packed festive programme of family activities and adult courses ready to inspire and entertain visitors of all ages. And families visiting can also pick up a trail and a backpack from reception to discover fun things to do while you’re here,” said Rachel.

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She added: “Finally, we’re delighted our popular Christmas Craft Fair is going ahead this weekend (November 18 and 19) featuring stalls from local and regional crafters - the perfect opportunity to buy a unique handmade Christmas gift or to treat yourself to something special.”

If anyone has questions or would like more information about the reopening, speak to the venue’s reception team in person, email them at info@nationalglasscentre.com or ring them on 0191-5155555 option 4.

For more information, go to www.nationalglasscentre.com