The City of Durham Trust

Trust AGM

The Annual General Meeting of the Trust will take place on Wednesday 9th May 2018 at 7:15pm in room 201 in Elvet Riverside 2. Please note the change from our usual venue. The meeting will consider the 2018 Annual Report, which also includes the Agenda.

At 8pm, after the AGM, Irwin Thompson from the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle Upon Tyne will give a lecture on The Durham Flood of 1771. Non-members will be very welcome.

Many people will have heard of this flood, which swept away Prebends Bridge, but it also swept away people’s livelihoods. How did they cope, in the days before insurance was available? What happened was that the gentry and the clergy collected funds and distributed it via a Flood Relief Committee. Its records have been transcribed, along with those of the corresponding Tyne flood. Irwin Thompson will set out what has been found.

Join the Trust

The City of Durham Trust is a membership organisation, and if you care about Durham City you should consider joining us, to support the work we do and influence our policies.

Standard membership costs just £15 a year, with a lower rate of £10 for retired people and discounted joint membership. Life membership is available for £200. This page has an online membership form.

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Praise for Trust’s Bulletin

A letter from John Pacey in the March 30 edition of the Durham Times praises an article in Bulletin 83, which makes a telling comparison between Durham and St Andrews Universities.

St. Andrew's University, ranked just after Cambridge and Oxford, and just before Durham has not, unlike Durham, identified the need for major expansion to enable it to maintain academic excellence, its Strategic Plan providing as follows:

St. Andrews has always been a small university, and intends to stay relatively small. The intimacy of the Town, the closeness of the community and the interaction of Town and Gown are key elements in the St. Andrews experience.

Bulletin No. 83 goes on to conclude:

Durham is the Country’s only university town with parity between resident and student numbers; no other town approaches this ratio. The present Master Plan will alter even this “balance”, and means that the City will have to adjust further to the University – rather than the University adjusting to the City – and thereby assume increasingly the character of a campus settlement. In so doing it reaffirms the metaphor of the University,traditionally considered to be the goose that laid the golden egg, now proving to be the cuckoo in the nest.

Mr Pacey concludes “I urge all who share my concern for the future of Durham City to read the full City of Durham Trust article” which you can do by following that link and turning to page 2.

The County Durham Plan

Trust responds to the Issues and Options consultation

After receiving legal advice, Durham County Council has been obliged to start preparing the County Durham Plan from the beginning, at the Issues and Options stage. (For the background to all this, see New readers start here)

The City of Durham Trust has now submitted responses on 40 separate matters raised in the Council’s Issues and Options consultation, which ended on August 8th. You can read all of them here. Among the points we make are:

The County Durham Plan is important for everyone in County Durham because it will set out the new development that is planned for the county. It contains allocations which show where development will take place and how it will be managed. The Plan also contains policies for determining planning applications. As long as there is planning uncertainty developers will seek to exploit this by pursuing their financial interests regardless of the needs of local communities.