Open Treasure spotlight: claiming Sanctuary at Durham Cathedral

This is the story of the Sanctuary Ring, which has greeted visitors to Durham since the 12th century. It is likely that many visitors to the Cathedral before 1980 grabbed this original Ring and posed for a photo. For over 450 years, the Sanctuary Ring represented the possibility of safety and salvation, for all sorts of crimes. In this post, we will explore the story of the Sanctuary Ring, from its purpose to how it worked in practice.

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Canon Rosalind Brown Retires

 

Canon Rosalind Brown, Nave Canon and Canon Librarian of Durham Cathedral, is retiring.  She has been at Durham Cathedral for the last 13 years.  Her final Sunday at the Cathedral as a member of its Chapter is Sunday 8 July. She has answered some questions about her ministry at Durham Cathedral and her plans for the future.

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Team Durham Cathedral are getting ready to race!

Twelve members of Team Durham Cathedral are hard at work training for the third annual Durham City Run on 18 July. The team of staff from the Cathedral and Durham’s Barclays Branch and local supporters are running in support of Foundation 2020. All the funds raised will go towards the maintenance and upkeep of the Cathedral; it is especially appropriate then that the race should start and end outside Durham’s most iconic landmark! Continue reading Team Durham Cathedral are getting ready to race!

Mining heritage celebrated at new exhibition at ‘Miners’ Cathedral’

This summer, Durham Cathedral is proud to present a new temporary exhibition celebrating the mining history and communities of County Durham, Miners: Pitmen, Pride and Prayer. The exhibition, in the collections gallery of Open Treasure, will explore how centuries of coal mining have shaped the North East and how mining heritage is still felt to this day in local communities.

We’ve picked a few stand-out items from the exhibition, which opens on Tuesday 19 June. Read more below, and let us know what your favourite object is! Continue reading Mining heritage celebrated at new exhibition at ‘Miners’ Cathedral’

Behind the scenes during an exhibition changeover

As our Open Treasure exhibition space closes for a week, allowing the Tudors exhibition to move out and Miners: Pitmen, Pride and Prayer to move in, we spoke to Exhibitions Officer Marie-Therese Mayne about the process she and her team goes through each time there’s change on the horizon. Continue reading Behind the scenes during an exhibition changeover

‘A little Vatican of choice manuscripts’: the unique history of Durham Cathedral Library

On Wednesdays and Saturdays, our Open Treasure gallery attendants deliver punchy 10 Minute Talks on the fascinating history of the Cathedral’s collections and buildings. Here’s a sample of a talk exploring the history of the Cathedral Library!

The birth of the collection

The library at Durham Cathedral is of significant importance as a direct continuation of the one started at Lindisfarne by St. Aidan. The books that the monks could carry with them were brought to Chester-Le-Street and it was here that the first new additions to the collection were made. The collection was bolstered in 934 AD by King Athelstan, who gave five new volumes to the community, including a copy of Bede’s ‘Life of Cuthbert’ which now resides in Corpus Christi College, Cambridge.

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The St Calais, or Carilef, Bible: May Treasure of the Month

Each month we feature an object from our internationally renowned collections as ‘Treasure of the Month’, and explain a little of their fascinating history. Durham Cathedral’s Treasure of the Month for May is undoubtedly one of the finest examples of 11th century Norman book production in existence – the Saint-Calais, or Carilef, Bible. Leaf through its pages at the website of Durham Priory Library Recreated, an ambitious digitisation project!

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The Shrine of St Cuthbert; A living place of worship, welcome and hospitality at the heart of a UNESCO World Heritage Site.