A NORTH-EAST Euro MP is visiting a redundant cement works site today to check out plans for bringing it back into use.

Dr Gordon Adam, who is Labour spokesman on Rural Affairs at the European Parliament, wants to see how European grants could improve the former Lafarge UK Blue Circle site and create jobs at Eastgate, in Weardale.

He will meet officers from Wear Valley District Council at the plant, which closed in August 1992 with the loss of 147 posts.

Top on a list of proposals to replace it, is a national renewable energy centre with a model village, hotel, business park and tourist facilities with links to the reopened Weardale Railway.

Dr Adam said last night: "I am keen that a wide range of job-creating possibilities are developed on this large and important site.

"It does need some environmental restoration but that still leaves a big potential for an exciting mix of developments.

"I am pleased that tourism potential is being looked at since tourism is the largest growth sector in Europe.

"The development of a steam railway, enabled by significant European grants, is one way of drawing in new visitors to this area of natural beauty."