Category: Durham

Durham Castle – The Palace of The Prince Bishops

The year is 1072, only six years after the Norman conquests, and William the Conqueror had moved the Normans northwards requiring a castle where Durham Castle now stands. The main aim to defend from the Scottish but increasingly also, a place to govern from with a rebellious peoples of North England. Construction began in 1076 under the Earl of Northumberland, Waltheof, but alas he rebelled against the King and was executed. What came next was a complete change of the way the area was governed, specific to the area. County Durham has numerous signs saying the ‘Land of The Prince...

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Launderette Sessions, Durham – A Unique Gig Venue

On a recent weekend break in Durham I was looking at some unique and great things to enjoy in the evenings. I was pointed in the direction of The Launderette Sessions at the Old Cinema Launderette. Now then, that is totally unique indeed, of course I went for it and a wonderful evening it was too. Yes, it is a launderette by day, a very good one by all accounts, but in the evenings it becomes a venue for music gigs of all kinds of tastes. It is not often you get a quirky place where you get a...

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Sanderlings and Dunlins of Crimdon Beach

A walk along a stretch of beach is so much more than sea and sand as I am sure you will agree. The Durham Heritage Coast is a wonderful way to experience a great deal of variety along a coast line and enjoy walking the coast here enormously. On my recent article about walking along Crimdon Beach I explored some of the delights that can be experienced here, but if you ever come to walk here you are greeted by groups of birds in great variety. And the Sanderling groups are front and centre, walking fast, on their little...

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The Bowes Museum In Barnard Castle

One minute you are in the Durham Dales, Teesdale and the historic small market town of Barnard Castle. Turn a corner and through the gates, and you are faced with a grand and large building. It is literally transporting you to France. In fact the Bowes Museum is the only building of its kind in our country that was built in the style of French museums of the First Empire period. A sight to behold even before seeing the many treasures within and around. Before I even get started on the massive collection, priceless pieces of art and of...

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Bowlees Visitor Centre and Gibson’s Cave, Teesdale

Within the beautiful valley of Teesdale, Durham Dales, there is one place that is always my first stop here, Bowlees Visitor Centre. This is the place you will want to start all of your discovery of Teesdale and the natural beauty around. It is definitely perfectly placed! This is so so so much more than a Visitor Centre. Nestled within woodland, with a spacious car park, there are so many options to discover nature from this point too. You may recall my walks by Low and High Force or the stargazing by the waterfalls. Well this is the centre...

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The Weardale Museum and High House Chapel

I was having a day’s journey through Weardale in the Durham Dales. I had often come for walks, hikes and views but this was a day of discovery and to learn more about the people of the area and the history. After visiting the Durham Dales Centre I drove a little up the valley and my next destination was the Weardale Museum at Ireshopeburn. A little treasure trove on the history of this beautiful valley and its people. Entirely run by keen volunteers you can tell immediately on entering that a great deal of time, effort and resources have...

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Durham Dales Centre, Stanhope and the Fossil Tree

Nestled in the heart of the Weardale, The Durham Dales, is the small market town of Stanhope. This is a wonderful spot to discover more about the Durham Dales or to venture from on foot, or as the gateway to more dales adventures. In fact it was from here I did one of my favourite short walks last year with much history and amazing views. As you enter the town you will see the church not too far from the Durham Dales Centre, but the churchyard is home to more than the usual, it has a magical example of...

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Durham Dales: A Walk Through Slitt Wood

What a wonderful spot, situated in the heart of Weardale in the Durham Dales, Slitt Wood is a secret paradise to walk and not only take in the wealth of nature on offer but also some great deal of history from the area, a history that not only comprises industry of the last few hundred years but geology going back 320 million years. This is a start point also for a 3 mile circular walk full of such variety. Not too strenuous but a perfect way to see nature in full variety in this part of the Durham Dales....

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