ROMSEY Abbey has been awarded a cash boost worth nearly £60,000 to help bounce back from the coronavirus crisis.

The abbey, Church Lane, was given a £50,900 grant from the second round of the £1.57 billion Government's Cultural Recovery Fund.

This will help the place of worship fully reopen as a cultural, heritage and tourist attraction.

The Rev Thomas Wharton, Vicar of Romsey, said the the grant will help the abbey recover from the "damaging financial impact of Covid-19".

He said: "We were amazed and delighted to be awarded this most generous grant from the Culture Recovery Fund.

"This grant will help Romsey Abbey recover from the damaging financial impact of Covid-19 on Romsey’s most significant heritage and cultural site.”

Church Warden Chris said some of the money will help fund repair work, which could help bring concerts and events back to life.

He explained: "Romsey Abbey is one of the finest examples of a late Norman Abbey in the country, essentially unchanged since the Dissolution of the Monasteries.

"This grant will help the abbey fully reopen and be re-established as a cultural, heritage and tourist attraction. In addition to being a heritage and visitor attraction; the abbey also hosts around 50 concerts in a normal year.

"A few building issues have arisen during the pandemic and a small proportion of the grant will be used to correct these, including restoring power to the lights used for concerts and events.

"We also have a backlog of admin and communication tasks to catch up on, including updating our website for visitors and tours."

He added the abbey will be helping local people and businesses until the end of June.

He explained: "From now to the end of June 2021, we will be supporting local people and businesses by employing local people and contracting with local businesses.”

This comes as more than 2,700 organisations have been offered grants and loans to help them stay afloat.

Nearly £400 million has been awarded to thousands of cultural organisations across the country, including Glastonbury, the National Football Museum in Manchester and Bamburgh Castle, Northumberland.