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  • Availability is mainly in the vacation periods (Christmas, Easter, Summer), when students clear their rooms
  • Rooms typically become available two to three months in advance, so please revisit the website within that period if nothing is available now
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Bed and breakfast accommodation in Durham University colleges

Not just for students - anyone can book!

  • Staying in Durham college accommodation is an exciting backstage pass to the city. These centrally-located bed and breakfast (B&B) rooms are a cost effective alternative to staying in a cheap Durham hotel
  • By providing the college with revenue you will be contributing to the upkeep of the buildings, whether they are historic (Durham Castle) or more modern (Durham Business School)
  • Trace the footsteps of Will Carling, Bill Bryson, Andrew Strauss, or even James Bond (Roger Moore and George Lazenby) who have all passed through Durham's colleges
  • Eat in the college hall, wander through the college's gardens or take a tour of Durham's UNESCO World Heritage Sites

Reviews for Durham

4.3
Based on 722 reviews
Room
4.0
Value
4.3
Food
4.4
Service
4.4
Overall
4.3
★★★★★
478
★★★★
199
★★★
37
★★
8
0

Everything to do with our visit to Durham University was excellent, the room was far better than I expected and the reception staff were absolutely fabulous, so knowledgeable, informative and helpful...could not have been better. Thank you a wonderful experience....hope my daughter will be accepted both to the Uni and to University College!

(Review Of Durham Castle, Durham)

Rather difficult if you are not very mobile ( a long way down & up again to Durham) but otherwise very good indeed position wise. Accommodation welcoming, clean & comfortable at a really good price- excellent value for money.

(Review Of St Aidan's College, Durham)

Thank you for making our stay in Durham an enjoyable experience. The rooms were very clean and we appreciated the little extras. In particular, the breakfast was really first class. Kind Regards Victoria Machin

(Review Of Hatfield College, Durham)

Had a lovely experience at our stay at Durham castle celebrating our silver wedding anniversary. The tour which was free if you stayed was interesting. Parking with the permit provided on Palace Green was good. The breakfast was excellent Porridge delicious. Everything from cereals to cooked breakfast. Fruit juices to range of coffee and teas.

(Review Of Durham Castle, Durham)

128 steps to room was just about manageable! Water pressure in shower not good but view from the room was just fabulous as direct view of the Cathedral. Room had all facilities needed. Cleaned and tidied each day. Breakfast in Great Hall was excellent. Made to feel very welcome generally. Highly recommended if you are mobile enough for the steps.

(Review Of Durham Castle, Durham)

The best accommodation in Durham is clearly very good. We were extraordinarily disappointed that University students might be assigned to very poor accommodation.

(Review Of Collingwood College, Durham)

My only negative was that i couldn't get breakfast as i had to get the train to Newcastle just after 8. It may be worth considering for guests staying on the weekend of The Great North Run and maybe having a pasta party the night before. The staff were very helpful

(Review Of Durham Castle, Durham)

We joined up with a small group totalling 5 in number who were using college accomodation for the first time. It was a very enjoyable experience in an amazing location. Very central to all we planned to do during our stay.

(Review Of Collingwood College, Durham)

I brought my grandson who couldn't believe we were staying in a real castle! The experience lived up to all expectations:- now my wife insists I bring her!

(Review Of Durham Castle, Durham)

Durham Visitor information

Durham is an attractive and historic city, well-known for its spectacular Norman Cathedral and Castle, which over-look the city.

Durham is compact yet offers a wide range of facilities. Shops and restaurants co-exist happily with the Victorian Market. Much of Durham’s shopping area is closed to traffic, making for a more relaxed atmosphere. Take time to sit in the cobbled Market Place and enjoy some of the street entertainment, particularly during July and August. The monthly Farmers’ Market is a welcome new addition to the events calendar. Here you will find fresh local specialities to take back home. In the spring and summer, stunning floral displays adorn the City for which Durham regularly wins prizes.

Dozens of regional attractions are easily reached from Durham, making it an ideal touring base. The largest open-air museum in England is to be found at Beamish where you can see life as it was at the beginning of the last century. Fine art treasures can be seen at the John and Josephine Bowes Museum, a French-style chateau in Barnard Castle.

It should be understood that colleges are designed primarily for students: not for children or adults expecting a high level of luxury. However, with this in mind, the colleges do meet a level of comfort that we expect most visitors to be happy with, and we will welcome any feedback where this is not the case.

Dates of Durham's academic vacations

Rooms are mainly available during the academic vacations.

Easter: mid-March to late-April
Summer: late-June to mid-October
Christmas: mid-December to mid-January

Getting to Durham

Durham is 264 miles from London, 187 miles from Birmingham, 125 miles from Edinburgh and 67 miles from York.

Durham city centre is only two miles from the A1(M). Leave the motorway at Junction 62 on the A690 Durham - Sunderland road and follow signs to Durham City Centre.

There are several express coach services daily from most major cities. Durham is well served by both regional express services and the local bus network. From the city bus station - a short walk from the railway station - a bus service runs every 15 minutes past the Colleges on South Road.

By Rail

60 InterCity trains from most major centres in the country call at Durham daily including 14 trains from London. The National Express high speed service takes under 3 hours from London King's Cross on the main East Coast line. First Transpennine Express offers frequent links to Manchester, Sheffield and Leeds, while Cross Country links Durham directly with Scotland, the Midlands, and the South West.

Durham is just over 3 hours from Birmingham, 2½ hours from Manchester, 1½ hours from Edinburgh and 45 minutes from York.

By Air

Durham is 30 minutes' drive from Newcastle Airport and about 40 minutes from Durham Tees Valley. Durham is linked to Newcastle Airport by rail and metro. Travellers into Durham Tees Valley can take advantage of the free Sky Express bus service that links the airport to Darlington railway station, with regular connections to Durham.

History of Durham

Durham: the City

Archaeological evidence suggests a history of settlement in the area since roughly 2000 BC. The present city can clearly be traced back to 995 AD, when a group of monks from Lindisfarne chose the strategic high peninsula as a place to settle with the body of Saint Cuthbert (which had previously lain in Chester-le-Street), founding a church there.

The name "Durham" comes from the Old English "dun", meaning hill, and the Old Norse "holme", which translates to island. Some attribute the city's name to the legend of the Dun Cow and the milkmaid who in legend guided the monks of Lindisfarne carrying the body of Saint Cuthbert to the site of the present city in 995 AD. The Cathedral Church of Christ, Blessed Mary the Virgin and St Cuthbert of Durham, commonly referred to as Durham Cathedral, is the seat of the Anglican Bishop of Durham. The Bishopric dates from 1080, with the present cathedral being founded in AD 1093. The cathedral is regarded as one of the finest examples of Norman architecture and has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site along with nearby Durham Castle, which faces it across Palace Green.

The castle was originally built in the 11th century as a projection of the Norman king's power in the north of England, as the population of England in the north remained "wild and fickle" following the disruption of the Norman Conquest in 1066. It is an excellent example of the early motte and bailey castles favoured by the Normans. 

Durham: the University

The University of Durham was founded in 1832 and granted a Royal Charter in 1837. It was one of the first new universities to open in England for more than 600 years, and is claimed to be England's third oldest after Oxford and Cambridge, although other higher education institutions also make this claim.

Famous alumni include: former England rugby captains Will Carling and Phil de Glanville along with Vice-captain Will Greenwood. Olympic gold-medal triple jumper Jonathan Edwards graduated in 1987. Noted writers include Edward Bradley, author of The Adventures of Mr. Verdant Green, Minette Walters author of The Sculptress and The Scold's Bridle and Graham Hancock, author of The Sign and the Seal.
 

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