I think we might have to face it: the Rookhope Inn has been closed for a couple of years now and doesn’t look like it’s about to open any time soon. When I was last up there (18/03/23) there was no activity; in fact it appeared to be derelict to all intents and purposes.
I’m sure it’s unfortunate for the village and is a major loss for Weardale Way and Pennine Journey walkers as well as C2C cyclists. For anyone walking the Weardale Way there’s little point continuing into Rookhope unless your objective is Barrington Bunkhouse or you’re interested in other features such as the ‘Rookhope borehole’ for instance.
Our advice – shame that it is – is to cut your losses, miss out Rookhope altogether, and follow this alternative route, which combines Sections 3 & 4 into a comfortable day-walk to Stanhope with a potential pub stop at Cross Keys Inn, Eastgate.
We’ll be keeping our eye on developments and posting here (if you have any information you’d like to share feel free to post in the comments).