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Durham University

St Cuthbert's Society

Prospective Students

Message from the Principal, Professor Elizabeth Archibald

Principal’s Pre-Application Open Day Welcome Video

(Right click on the link to open the video in a new tab)

Durham colleges are very special places, and St Cuthbert’s Society (generally known as Cuth’s) is no exception. Teaching for degrees does not take place in colleges, but a great deal of life learning goes on in them, and lifelong friendships are made. Our community is diverse, with many international students. Most first years live in, and so meet a very wide range of students, studying all the subjects on offer at Durham; and they get to know older students, staff and senior members of college as well as their own year group. The JCR (the student community which is an independent charity) offers an ever-growing range of activities, sports and societies, with many opportunities for creativity, teamwork, democratic governance and leadership.

We want all our students to flourish during their time here, both in their academic studies and in their own personal development. Support is available in the college both from college staff and from the student welfare team. A wide range of lectures and debates is organized each year by individual student societies and by college staff, offering insights into academic research, contemporary social issues, charitable activities and career opportunities. Many former Cuth’s students keep in touch with the college for the rest of their lives, and are keen to help current students. It is a wonderful family which offers support and intellectual stimulus, entertainment and training. You can play sport to win the colleges league, or just to have fun and a bit of exercise. You can put on a play in the dining hall, or in the University’s dedicated theatre. You can perform at an Open Mic night, or at a formal concert in Durham Cathedral. You can hear inspiring speakers at college Formals (dinners), or volunteer to inspire disadvantaged children in the wider Durham community. And you too will make friends for life.

At Durham University, you not only choose a programme of study, you also choose a college, which every student belongs to. A college is a vibrant, supportive community that provides opportunities for you to gain new experiences and develop skills to achieve more in your future life. Each college has its own distinctive character defined by its buildings, traditions and people, and each offers a range of facilities for study, sports, socialising and relaxing.

St Cuthbert's Society is one of the oldest and friendliest student communities in Durham. Cuth's has a lot to offer potential students, from academic and personal development to a whole host of clubs and societies, many of which are unique to the college. We have two residential sites, one on the Bailey, the historic heart of Durham, and a more modern residence at Parsons Field ten minutes away.

Life at St. Cuthbert's Society can be hugely exciting and rewarding. Not only are we the only Durham college which can offer catered and self-catered accommodation, but we also have two gyms, a student-run library, two bars and a range of other facilities which you can find out about on these pages.

If you want to know more about us please follow the links. If you have further questions please contact Reception on



Black Lives Matter

St Cuthbert’s Society and Durham University do not tolerate racism or discrimination in any form, spoken or written. We welcome and celebrate diversity; inclusivity and respect are key values for us. The Society was founded in 1888 by and for the ‘Unattached’, students who did not identify with the colleges that then existed and wanted their own community. College staff work hard, in collaboration with the JCR (the student community), to make everyone feel welcome, safe and valued; but we recognize that we may not be aware of some issues and incidents which need addressing, or of our own unconscious biases, and that there is more that we can and should do. The JCR community puts a strong emphasis on the welfare of all students and includes visible and accessible minority representation (see the JCR statement on this page). You can look at the JCR’s Instagram account to see useful resources put together by our own students in relation to the Black Lives Matter campaign. We are planning college events this month and through next year to ensure that we promote better understanding in our community, challenge problematic views and facilitate open discussion.

JCR Statement on racism and Black Lives Matter

As a JCR we utterly condemn all forms of racism, and acknowledge the need for action against racism in Durham University. We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment and listening to and acting on the voices of black and minority ethnic students.

If you wish to get in touch with the JCR whether for support, to make a suggestion on our policy and action, or make a complaint, please do so to any of the officers or reps below:

Minority Reps: (Ethnic Minority Rep- Mabrur Rahman) (LGBT+ Rep- Rowan Morris) (Working Class Students’ Rep- Jack Simmonds) (Students with Disabilities Rep- Emma Stephens)

Exec Members: (JCR President- Elena Martin) (Senior Welfare Officer- Ewan Swift) (Finance and Compliance Officer- Rishi Jindal) (JCR Chair- Saskia Wootton-Cane)

We acknowledge that some students may not feel comfortable speaking to the JCR. Below are alternative avenues through which students can share experiences or raise complaints if they wish.


People of Colour Association:

Durham Women’s Association:

Working Class Students’ Association:

LGBT+ Association:

Trans Association:

International Students’ Association:

Students with Disabilities Association:

Mature Students Association:

We will be posting educational resources over the next few days. If you have something you would like to share, please email it to It is the responsibility of us as an institution to provide these resources, and our students as individuals to engage, if we are to truly eradicate racism from our community.