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Report - Ushaw Seminary (July 2017)


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28DL Full Member
My first attempt at this one was quickly thwarted but I had better luck the second time round.

The seminary was founded in 1808 by scholars from the English College, Douai, who had fled France after the French Revolution - it was originally established in the Spanish Netherlands, now France, in 1568 to train English priests and educate laymen during the reign of Elizabeth I. The college owns more than 40,000 books, medieval manuscripts, papers, the archive of the English College at Lisbon from 1628 to 1971 and an extensive collection of books on and by Blessed John Henry Newman. Its grounds cover about 380 acres.

The seminary maintained a close relationship with the university of Durham and was used as halls from 1968. In 2017, Durham University announced plans to develop an international residential research library at Ushaw College, the first of its kind in the UK, with the aim of attracting scholars from around the world to work on the collections of Ushaw, Durham University and Durham Cathedral. The University has also confirmed that it has extended the agreement to lease the east wing of the College (used by the Business School) to 2027. The College is also used for numerous musical events and for the Ushaw Lecture Series, organised by the University's Centre for Catholic Studies.

The active wing is pretty grand
so you can tell why the institutions maintaining the place are trying hard to keep it afloat!

This is the wing of Ushaw Seminary which was abandoned in 2011 due to dwindling numbers (a very common theme for these places in North England). It is very vandalized but the architecture is noteworthy. I'm not clear on whether you can get into the chapel - I believe I missed the entrance entirely so I don't know if it is sealed or not. The swimming baths cannot be accessed internally but I didn't try and scout out any other routes as the active wing is patrolled by security and has actively monitored CCTV.












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